A celebration was held at Dr. Freddie Thomas High School Saturday to showcase all the positive things that are happening right here in Rochester.
"I grew up there. My whole family is there. My community is there. My friends are there," said Hector Vargas, a member of Pac-Tac.
Hector Vargas is one of the thousands who call the Northeast part of Rochester home. He came to Saturday's Northeast celebration to let the community know his home is alive and vibrant.
"In our community, we see that a lot more people are coming outside. People that are using their houses as apartments because they don't want to use their front porches. You see them planting flowers, my next door neighbor, she put a fan on her front porch out there. She says every time she sees us, she is so glad," said Vargas.
There's a reason Vargas' neighbors feel safe. Their houses are watched by the neighborhood group, Pac-Tac. Members walk and clean up the streets, but they're not the only ones taking action.
For residents in the Northeast quadrant, it's not only about keeping your neighborhood safe but it's also about taking pride in it. Organizations, like Project Hope, help with that.
"We have gardens that are established. For instance, we have three beautification projects, two gardens and one which is a flower garden. Clifford and Conkey for instance, there's wonderful things that are happening in our neighborhood and it's nice to show the community," said Sacha Rios, Project Hope Resident Participation Coordinator.
At Saturday's celebration, at least a dozen groups, like Pac-Tac and Project Hope, all came together under one roof. It was a way for the community to showcase the positive things in their part of the city.
"People come from all over the county to the Northeast to come to the public market two or three times a week. We have great schools, we have a hospital in the Northeast, we have a lot of resources, a lot of good things so we want to celebrate that," said Roberto Burgos, Community Program Planner for the City of Rochester.
While there's always room for improvement, community members say they see change and it's positive.
"By signing a sheet of paper, putting on the vest, you're telling the drug dealers, you're telling the people that are out there that hey you don't control the streets. We live here, we control the streets," said Vargas.