Weather Forecast


The Seven Project gives powerful message to WDC students about respect, good choices and hope

The Seven Project members Terrance Talley (left) and Richard Baker talk with Wadena-Deer Creek sixth-grade students Wednesday about treating one another with respect and kindness.

The Seven Project captivated Wadena-Deer Creek students on Wednesday with their message, music and motivation.

Their goal was to address common issues that often overwhelm, confuse and misdirect young people today. Some of those issues include bullying, disrespect and poor choices.

Richard Baker, who serves as the director of The Seven Project, based in Byron, Minn., describes their presentations and rallies as "edutainment." The group incorporates a live band, multi-media screens, video segments, lighting and skilled speakers who share personal stories.

WDC sixth-grade student Taylor Dirks said the rally and the presentation to her sixth-grade class was "awesome."

"It was good for us to hear about being kind to one another and to make sure we respect each other and our teachers," Dirks said.

WDC junior, Mason Lohmiller, walked away from the rally with a new appreciation for accepting differences in people.

"You should always try to make others feel accepted. Don't pick on people or make them feel bad," Lohmiller said.

For WDC High School Prinicipal Tyler Church, respect and bullying are issues any school wrestles with today, but technology adds another dimension to the problem.

"With the added technology we have today, it is becoming an even bigger problem because kids can attack through Facebook or texting," Church said.

He said that's why Wadena-Deer Creek Schools is taking a focused approach to bullying and disrespect. The Seven Project rally is one of those approaches he hopes will connect with WDC teens and leave an impression.

The Seven Project bases their presentation on seven points: character, choices, dreams, bullying, leadership, respect and hope.

"The Seven Project is made up of real people who are sharing our own personal stories," Baker said. "If we can leave one message in [a student's] mind, that they will remember and practice, then we've been successful."