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Goals of conference to direct change

Transformation Sunnyside recently received $40,000 in matching funds from Vista Hermosa Foundation of Prescott, according to Roberto Matus.

He said the local group raised a matching $40,000 through contributions from the Sunnyside community and Transformation Sunnyside members are excited about the support shown for their efforts.

"Vista Hermosa Foundation is from out of the area and their contribution to our efforts shows the belief others have in what we are doing," said Matus.

He said the contribution is timely because of the upcoming Ed Silvoso conference scheduled for Friday and Saturday, July 25 and 26.

"We have three goals at the conference," said Matus, listing the first goal as the fact that Transformation Sunnyside has hopes of mobilizing people of faith to pray for the transformation of the community.

"We will focus on hope for the future through prayer (at the conference)," he stated.

As a second goal, the group wishes to provide an opportunity for the general public and invite community members to "...take a greater role of involvement in community affairs." Matus said he feels much of the current community involvement is limited to a small group of individuals interested in the betterment of Sunnyside.

The third goal of the conference, according to Matus, is to help those from within the marketplace (business leaders) gain a sense of being included. He said business leaders have an opportunity to reach out to others exacting change.

"Last year's conference was a primer to prepare the groundwork towards transformation," said Matus. He stated this year's Ed Silvoso conference will focus on achieving the goals set for Transformation Sunnyside, with an emphasis on addressing the needs of the Hispanic community members.

He said Transformation Sunnyside wants to reach out to those from within the community's Hispanic culture, providing information, worship and resources in Spanish. Therefore, Friday night's events will be in Spanish and translated to English.

The topic of conversation, according to Matus, will be focused on creating collaborations and unifying both the Hispanic and the English-speaking cultures within the community.

He said Silvoso will explain to those in attendance how their gifts and talents can be utilized for the purpose of contributing to change within the community.

"Hispanic members of the community have planned Friday's events," said Matus, stating Transformation Sunnyside wants to allow those business owners and community members who don't speak English to understand the many ways they can help transform the community.

Though Saturday's events will be in English, Matus said the conversations will be translated to Spanish for the purpose of continuing to serve the Hispanic members of the community.

He emphasized the fact that the group has been gaining confidence from others throughout the community, including the Sunnyside School District. He said the school district's support has been greatly appreciated, as the venue for the conference is at Sunnyside High School's auditorium.

The cost of the event is $25 and includes lunch on Saturday.

Friday evening's events are scheduled from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. and Saturday, the conference is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For more information or to register for the conference, call 837-8638 or visit: www.harvestevan.org/transformation.

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