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Challenge Grant: Support the Windfire Program at THIRDlevel

We have all recently received a sad reminder that intolerance and hatred, and their negative impacts, are still a part of our community's experience.

For more than thirty years, Third Level Crisis Center has been welcoming anyone in our communities who are in crisis or life transition. During this long history, we have helped people heal, learn and grow while accepting who they are, respecting their decisions and honoring their rights.

Third Level makes specific efforts to reach out to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered and Questioning (LGBTQ) youth. For over 12 years Windfire has provided weekly support group meetings throughout the Grand Traverse region. In 2004, with a small grant from the Arcus Foundation, Windfire has expanded its services to provide school personnel with the information and skills needed to create safe space for LGBTQ students. In addition, Windfire will encourage youth to participate in Leadership councils to plan educational and social events in their areas. Through these efforts, Windfire will be working to promote tolerance and respect throughout our communities.

Third Level has been presented with a wonderful challenge. Mike Dively, a former resident of Traverse City where he represented the region in the State Legislature and was a member of the Third Level Board of Directors, has offered to give Windfire $5,000 if we can raise $5,000 by National Coming Out day, October 11th 2004. We have, of course, accepted this challenge with enthusiasm.

This challenge provides everyone who has an interest with the opportunity to participate in the growth of tolerance and respect and to enhance the identity development of LGBTQ youth.

Windfire will be planning fundraising events to meet this challenge. Please stay tuned for details, which will be available at www.THIRDlevel.org, or by phone at 231-922-4800. Should you wish to donate immediately, please make checks payable to Third Level Crisis Center, and print WINDFIRE in the memo line.

Donations can be mailed to Third Level Crisis Center, PO Box 1035, Traverse City, Michigan, 49685.

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