August 7, 2013 (Alpine) – On August 24 there will be a Celebration of Life Concert from 3 – 9 p.m. at the VFW Post 9578, 844 Tavern Rd., Alpine. The concert will honor our nation’s Military and their families and proceeds will benefit Alpine Cemetery.
The concert will include performances by Three Chord Justice, The Legends and special guest, Teagan Taylor. Everyone is welcome to dance and enjoy food and beverages. The suggested donation is $10 per person at the door.
National and international leaders in social justice, politics, faith and entertainment to speak
August 6, 2013 (La Mesa)-- While the hallowed halls of downtown San Diego are echoing with strategies for staying in office and getting through the next week, more than 500 local participants are preparing to be inspired by some of the nation’s most effective leaders at the annual Global Leadership Summit, August 8-9, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at Journey Community Church, 8363 Center Drive, La Mesa.
“This is a chance to hear from men and women who demonstrate influence in many arenas – politics, social justice, faith and entertainment – and tobe inspired to become confident truth-sayers in our own spheres of influence,” said Ed Noble, Lead Pastor.Speakers such as General Colin Powell, former U.S. Secretary of State, Mark Burnett, executive producer of Survivor and The Voice, Bob Goff, General Counsel to Uganda and Founder and CEO of Restore International, Liz Wiseman, executive strategy and leadership consultant and more will make the case for becoming a leader, not for a term of office or for a bottom-line result, but for life.
August 2, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – Top 10 Productions, Producers of the Miss California USA® Pageants, hosted a send-off party on July 28 for a San Diego native who will be heading to the national Miss Teen USA® Competition. Cassidy Wolf, Miss California Teen USA 2013, represented Greater San Diego at the state pageant when she won the title of Miss California Teen USA 2013.
Cassidy was born and raised in San Diego, living in Ramona for 14 years. She currently resides in Temecula and is a graduate from Great Oak High School. She attends Palomar Community College, and hopes to apply to San Diego State University, where she will study for a career in broadcast journalism.
August 3, 2013 (San Diego) – KNSJ 89.1 FM , the Network for Social Justice, will present its first-ever People’s Microphone Awards at the new public radio station’s launch party on Saturday, August 3 from 6-9 p.m. at Mission Trails Regional Parks. Tickets are available at www.knsj.org.
The awards are presented to individuals and organizations who have demonstrated leadership and commitment to social justice causes on behalf of people in their communities or our environment. The winners, a majority of whom will be present to accept their honors, are: Bonnie La Chappa, Elizabeth Lou, Dave Patterson, Estela de los Rios, Lori Saldana, Lisa Kove, Martha Sullivan and Ray Lutz with Decommission San Onofre,Donna Tisdale with Protect Our Communities Foundation, Cleveland National Forest Foundation, San Diego Dream Team, and Save Mission Trails.
By Ariele Johannson
July 21, 2013 (Descanso) Efforts of the Mountain Empire Men’s Club culminated in a demonstration of the maxim “It takes a village to raise a child.”
An outpouring of volunteer effort, donations, and pitching-in from the mountain community of Descanso made this year’s scholarship fundraiser on June 28 event another success. Tammy Cooker and her crew from Descanso Junction and Catering served up a fabulous barbecue dinner of Jack Daniels tri-tip and chicken, while the Blue Mountain Band performed live music onstage at the historic Descanso Town Hall.
July 6, 2013 (El Cajon) – The Kiwanis Club of El Cajon Valley presents Bunco at The Salvation Army, 1011 E. Main St., El Cajon on July 12, from 6:30 p.m. until 9:30 p.m. The evening will include a potato bar and raffles. There will be prizes for 1st and 2nd, most wins most Bunco’s and a Boobie prize. Bunco is a social dice game involving all luck and no skill.
Story, photos and video by Billy Ortiz
June 22, 2013 (Lakeside) The airwaves have come alive at the Lakeside Fire Protection District fire station annex this weekend, where the Lakeside Amateur Radio Club is taking part in a two-day Field Day event held worldwide.
The American Radio Relay League (ARRL ) is a 150,000 + member organization partaking in an annual US, Canada, and Hawaii event. More than 35,000 radio amateurs gather with their clubs, groups or simply with friends to operate from remote locations . ARRL says of the occasion, “ Field Day is a picnic, a campout, practice for emergencies, an informal contest and, most of all, FUN!”
By Ariele Johannson
June 17, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – Any pet owner who has lost their pet - be it Schnauzer, iguana, Siamese cat, or parrot - knows how disconcerting and even agonizing it can be to find your pet has disappeared. Wouldn’t you want someone professional to help you locate your pet who considers your lost pet “a missing family member?" Pet Search and Rescue detectives Annalisa Berns and K9 Handler Judy Britton help pet owners locate their lost pets intact; or in some cases, to get closure if the pet has not survived. These Pet Detectives use search dogs and a combination of techniques. Pet Search and Rescue has an impressive 80% success rate.
June 17, 2013 (San Diego)-- San Diegans will decide which local environmental nonprofit organization is most deserving of the ECO Ambassadors People’s Choice Award and a grand prize of $25,000 from San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E). The eight local organizations that are finalists were announced at a breakfast ceremony on May 28. They were selected to participate because their programs exemplify environmental stewardship, innovation and responsibility.
By Janis Mork
June 13, 2013 (San Diego)--“When I woke up, I was confused, I was terrified,” recalled Santee resident Johana Guzman, who was in a coma for two weeks after she was struck by a car while trying to protect her 2-year-old son. With help from Sharp Hospital’s Rehab Services, she overcame her injuries and now helps others. “We are warriors,” she said. “Hard times are opportunities to be better,” she told ECM. “I believe inner strength heals us, helps us to see clearly the value of life. We must never give up our dreams.”
On May 31, Guzman was honored at the annual Victories of Spirit event at Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego. Four individuals and one organization received the Eagle Spirit Award, named for the most potent healing symbol of the Navajos. Honorees also included Mike Buxbaum, Anne Herman, and Zach Meno of La Mesa for patient achievement. San Diego State University Fitness Clinic for Individuals with Disabilities was honored for community achievement.
June 5, 2013 (El Cajon) -- Aspire Martial Arts in Rancho San Diego will host a free Martial Arts fitness class for the entire community on Saturday June 15th from 2:00-4:00 p.m.
Aspire Martial Arts will offer these along with bully prevention seminars every 8-9 weeks. The seminars are part of the ATA Martial Arts’ worldwide initiative to help stop childhood obesity and bullying through education.
May 30, 2013 (Santee) – The Knights of Columbus of Guardian Angels Church, located at 9310 Dalehurst Rd., Santee, CA 92071, is having a large rummage sale on June 1 and 2 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and 7:00 a.m. to 12 noon on Sunday.
Some proceeds go to the Church pantry, which helps people in need, as well as other charity projects supported by Knights of Columbus.
Nationally Honored Local Hero to Speak at Community Service Event
May 28, 2013 (Alpine)--The Alpine Fire Protection District will present a community event on May 30 from 6-8;30 p.m. at the Alpine Elementary School auditorium, 1850 Alpine Blvd. in Alpine. The event will feature Ennis Jackson, an award-winning speaker who has won the National Star of Life for his efforts to alert and educate the community which includes high schools, colleges and business on the subject of destructive decisions and life saving CPR techniques. These destructive decisions include underage drinking, the use of mind-altering drugs and texting while occupied, and most importantly, the value of family. Jackson is a paramedic stationed out of Alpine Fire Station 17.
May 27, 2013 (San Diego) – “Our school community was deeply saddened as we learned of the magnitude of the widespread devastation caused in the community of Moore, Oklahoma and surrounding areas. The absolute destruction has profoundly affected the lives of thousands of the residents in that area,” Chaim Heller, head of the San Diego Jewish Academy wrote in a letter to parents of students. “Jewish tradition teaches us "Al Taamod al dam re'echa" (Do not stand idly by while our neighbors are in pain). San Diego Jewish Academy has a longstanding tradition of reaching out to help any and all who are in need. We believe that our Jewish values of Tikkun Olam (repairing the world) and (acts of loving kindness) are essential components of our instructional program at San Diego Jewish Academy.”
May 23, 2013 (Alpine) – The Alpine high school graduates who are receiving college scholarships will be in attendance at the Alpine Woman’s Club last monthly luncheon for the 2012-2013 season on Tuesday, June 18 at 12:00 noon. The new officers will also be installed at this meeting.
By Janis Mork
May 22, 2013 (Alpine)- On May 21, Alpine Soroptomist had a special meeting to honor the organization’s Women of Achievement Award recipient, Brenda Killingbeck (pictured with program chair, Patty Tweed, and her two sons). She came with her sons, Clayton, 9, and 6-year-old Mason.
“The Women of Achievement Award is awarded to a single mom in East County trying to make a better life for herself, who is trying to support her family, enhance her career, or change [careers,” said Patty Tweed, program chair.
She introduced Killingbeck and read a short biography about Killingbeck, an Alpine resident and nurse whose actions helped locate a missing elderly man.
SAN MIGUEL FIRE DISTRICT AND CAL FIRE SEEKING VOLUNTEERS FOR WILDFIRE PREPAREDNESS AND PREVENTION CAMPAIGN MAY 25
May 22, 2013 (Spring Valley) – Maybe becoming a volunteer Firefighter is a bit much, but please consider being a volunteer “Fire Preventer.”
The San Miguel Fire District in cooperation with its partner CAL FIRE, is ramping up its “Before the Threat, Are You Ready” preparedness and prevention campaign. This massive public education effort provides critical preparedness information with an old- fashioned door-to-door contact.
Again this year they are hoping teams of community volunteers join CAL FIRE Firefighters in a door-to-door campaign in the Districts high hazard urban interface areas. Two major fires in four years have shown all of us the need to be prepared and to create defensible space, to have an evacuation plan, and have the supplies necessary to take care of your families for up to a week.
May 22, 2013 (Lakeside) – The Victorian Roses Ladies Riding Society presents their Wild West Casino Night 2 on June 1, 2013 at the Lakeside Rodeo Grounds, Lakeside, CA from 6-10 pm. It benefits Saving Horses Inc., a San Diego horse rescue charity.
Ticket price is $20/person & includes $200 in play chips. Beer or wine glasses are $20 each and come with 5 free drink tickets. Raffles, silent auction, door prizes, roulette, black jack, craps & poker tables.
Live music by the Honky Tonk Kings, food available for purchase by Descanso Junction Restaurant & Catering.
May 16, 2013 (El Cajon) – Children, seniors and families had fun exploring better ways to live at the free Farragut Circle Health & Safety Fair on May 11 in El Cajon.
The community outreach effort of the Neighbor-to-Neighbor Program of the First Presbyterian Church of El Cajon drew a steady stream of people to the 500 block of Farragut Circle. Mother Goose and local princesses helped welcome the early crowds.
“Everybody’s smiling,” said Jackie Jackson, library assistant at the Dr. William C. Herrick Community Health Care Library of the Grossmont Healthcare District in La Mesa. “This has to be the friendliest fair ever.”
May 15, 2013 (El Cajon) – Concerned Citizens of El Cajon will be meeting on May 29 at 6:30 p.m. at IHOP, 1286 Oakdale Avenue, El Cajon. The meeting will be to address concerns and solve problems. Everyone is welcome and can bring their concerns. Concerns can also be posted at http://www.elcajonneighbors.org/blogs.html.
By Janis Mork
May 11, 2013 (La Mesa)- “From Collier To Carrefour”, a fundraiser held April 28 at Collier Park, raised funds to send young adult leaders to a summer camp in Carrefour, Haiti through New Format, a Bible study for young adults that is part of Journey Community Church.
By Janis Mork
May 3, 2013 (San Diego’s East County)- James Pearson from Ember Arts has been helping Ugandan women escape poverty by selling their beautiful Acholi beads in America.
This fascinating story began in 2006, when Pearson first discovered the Acholi beads. While visiting Uganda for a nonprofit, he saw women working in a rock quarry, doing back-breaking work for just a dollar a day. Life was extremely difficult for these women, who were war refugees, and for their families.
By Rebecca J. Williamson
May 9, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) --To some, romantic love is a never-never land—a place of unfulfilled dreams. Sometimes, a parent chooses not to explore fulfilling his or her own needs in order to protect someone else.
Patricia, an East county resident who asked that her last name not be published, is a single mom. She does not date or bring a romantic partner into her life for a reason---to protect her now teen-age daughter from being hurt—emotionally, physically, or any other way.
“I decided not to date when she was two or three and to focus on raising her,” Patricia told ECM. As a mom, Patricia learned first-hand about having to protect her daughter from a man who was a convicted pedophile.
By George Dominguez
May 4, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) --Daunting as it may seem, Joe “Tiger” Patrick II is walking across America to honor the fallen heroes of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. This week, his journey took him through East County, where he met with local firefighters and paramedics.
"I felt a compelling need to do something to honor to our fallen heroes, to give people a close up view of those we lost. This isn't a political statement, but an expression of love and respect for those who volunteered to put themselves in harm’s way to protect us here at home," said Tiger. He honors the fallen by carrying a memorial mosaic panel which contains a picture of every fallen warrior.
By Janis Mork
April 29, 2013 (Santee)- Recently, a Coffee Corner benefit was held for Dylan Pourner, a kindergarten boy with brain cancer, in Santee. Organizers and students who helped out wore bracelets that said, “We Love Dylan…The greatest of these is love,” and “We Love Dylan” t-shirt. A concert was also held. Now, local schools are pitching in to help raise funds to help Dylan and his family.
ECM interviewed Gina Milton, one of the organizers. She told us that Dylan has a glioma, a non-operable mass. “He lost control of his hands and he can’t stand. The tumor is on the brain stem. It keeps growing and putting pressure on his brain.” But there is hope; he started a new treatment a few weeks ago and is expected to be getting it for eight weeks.
April 29, 2013 (El Cajon) – ACES Foundation El Cajon Animal Shelter will be auctioning Barkitecture Animal Houses to raise money for the ACES Foundation. The event will be May 19, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at O’s American Bistro, #75 Parkway Plaza, El Cajon.
Tickets are $25 and include an auction number, appetizers, and wine or beer. Tickets can be purchased online at www.acesfoundation.org or at the door.
CRITICAL TEEN ISSUES FORUM OFFERS INSIGHTS INTO BULLYING, SUICIDE, ALCOHOL, DRUGS AND SAFETY FOR EAST COUNTY YOUTH
By Janis Mork
“Facebook doesn’t create relationships. When I was younger, I remember posting something on Facebook, a bad word. My uncle called me and told me it was dumb. If you have a million followers or a lot of friends, those are not your friends honestly.”- a 22-year-old girl
April 28, 2013 (El Cajon)- April 16 was the 18th annual youth-led event by STAAND (Students Together Against Alcohol And Drugs), a critical teen issues forum addressing common problems prevalent in East County teens. Among those are bullying, suicide, alcohol, drugs, and safety (cyber bullying, cyber dating).
STAAND is a part of Communities Against Substance Abuse. The group has this forum because adjusting to high school can be challenging for all students, but East County has experienced a huge influx of immigrant families and up to 50 languages are spoken among families in local school districts. More of these families live in poverty than ever before. This affects teens greatly.
By Miriam Raftery
After high winds on April 8 ripped their trailer home off its foundation west of Jacumba in Bankhead Springs, Dewey St. Julien and Virginia Hogan found themselves homeless. They lived in their truck and later, a motel with help from Red Cross. Now they are on a list hoping to receive a home from Habitat for Humanity.
“They asked how they could repay what blessings have come their way,” said Lorrie Ostrander, who has been assisting the young coupe. So tonight, April 18, Julien and Hogan have organized a spaghetti dinner to benefit Julie Atherton, a Mountain Empire Health employee with breast cancer.
The dinner will be held at the Mountain Empire Community Center, 976 Sheridan Road in Campo. Suggested donation is $5 for adults and $3 for children. A silent auction will also be held.
March 19, 2013 (Lake Morena) – Community members are pitching in to help Lake Morena resident Julie Atherton, who has been diagnosed with breast cancer and is having surgery on March 28. Atherton works for the Mountain Empire Health at the Campo Community Center.
A spaghetti dinner fundraiser to help defray her medical expenses will be held on April 19 from 6-9 p.m. at the Mountain Empire Community Center, 976 Sheridan Road in Campo. A silent auction will also be held.
By Miriam Raftery
April 17, 2013 (La Mesa) – Community members are invited to support arts programs in local schools on May 2, 2013 from 5-8:30 p.m. when winners of the Golden Artistry Jewelry Design competition will be unveiled at the La Mesa Community Center’s Arbor Room, 4975 Memorial Drive in La Mesa.
Students from the Grossmont Union High School District compete annually in the competition sponsored by Golden Artistry. The program benefits arts programs in GUHSD schools. The winning design will be made into a dazzling piece of jewelry by master goldsmith Terry Whyte. You can vote for the Community’s Choice Award; this year’s theme is “growth.” View finalists: http://goldenartistrydesigncompetition.webstarts.com/
“When I was exposed to metalsmithing, it seemed accidental. I saw a professor silver solder a strip of silver into a ring form, and I knew I had to try to make a ring,” says Whyte. Three weeks after completing his first ring, he recalls, “I was in business. Nearly three years later, I was accepted into an apprenticeship situation with an English goldsmith.”