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Hope Academy of Public Service hosts Hope-Hempstead Chamber of Commerce Coffee to celebrate EAST program

EAST Facilitator Allison Rowe (second from left) and HAPS Principal Carol Duke (at far right) pose with some of the EAST students who helped put together this week’s Hope-Hempstead Chamber of Commerce Coffee. Photo by Christy Burns.

The rainy morning was dreary but the company was lively at this week’s Hope-Hempstead County Chamber of Commerce Coffee which occurred at the Hope Academy of Public Service this morning to celebrate that school’s Education Accelerated by Service and Technology program.

HAPS Principal Carol Duke explained how today’s coffee came to be. “Each year on our campus one club or another hosts a community coffee. And this year the EAST team wanted to do that as they prepare to go to conference.”

The conference, which will take place in Hot Springs, March 14-16, will include competitions among around 300 other Arkansas EAST teams. “They have to present the top six projects they have completed or are working on this school year with our community partners, whether that means with Rainbow of Challenges on their websites or helping out with Hope in Action in some of their food bank work. They decide which things they want to highlight and spend three days being judged on those things as well as spending three days going to networking classes, software and digital applications,” Duke said.

EAST Facilitator Allison Rowe credited eighth-grade student Ava Brown with helping organize the coffee, in designing posters and assembling the treats available to attendees of the coffee. Brown said, “We got some of our community partners to bring a lot of snacks.”

Rowe said the coffee was a way of thanking the community for its help throughout the school year with HAPS programs. “Without our community partners, these kids wouldn’t have anybody to work for, because that’s what EAST does.”

Among the victuals laid out around a Mardi Gras sash setting were turtle brownies, vanilla cake petit fours, s’more cookies, frosted brownie bites, two fruit trays, peanut butter fudge balls, fresh orange slices, chocolate pretzel sticks, turtle cookies, chocolate chip muffins, cinnamon buns, molasses cookies and for, beverages, fresh lemonade coffee and water.

One placard set up on the table urged those who wish to sponsor the EAST program’s conference to call Carol Duke or Allison Rowe to learn more about how to help. Both can be reached at the HAPS switchboard number, 1-870-777-3454.

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