Niagara Gazette — “Right now we’re looking at cutting off that school to prison pipeline,” she added. “And we will do whatever it takes to engage young men in positive programs and introduce them to positive male role models so they can do whatever it is they were created to do in their lives.”
The high school provides transportation to those who choose to attend the event, which offers seminars on a variety of matters, from health to relationships, to spirituality and job readiness. Lunch will include a speech from Paul Lancaster, director of player engagement for the Buffalo Bills and overseer of each player’s personal development, who is expected to share his own journey.
Eric Fields, resource building supervisor, has directed every one of the summits, and he loves the event. “There’s a lot of talented young men out there — a lot of smart ambitious driven young men that want a lot of good things for themselves,” he told me. “We always see in the media everything negative. This event gives you the faith and hope that the future will be strong.”
Young men like Earl Bass, who made the resource center their second home, are proof. While speaking appreciatively of the upbringing provided to him by his mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, he also expressed gratitude to the authority’s resource program which widened his world. “I was able to go to plays and sporting events, and I learned how to play chess,” he recalled. “One of the things the housing authority (also) taught me was that even though you were a resident you didn’t have to stay there — that it was only a temporary thing.”
Bass, 26, is now in the process of buying his own home. I guess you could say he’s heading to the top of his own personal summit. And Friday he’s going to show a lot of other young men the way.