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H.O.P.E. honors first scholarship winner

June 29th, 2012 2:44 pm by Katina Rose

Knowledge is power and the non-profit community organization H.O.P.E. (Help Our Potential Evolve) helps young leaders gain the knowledge necessary for successful futures.

H.O.P.E. was founded in 2008 by Stella Robinette to serve as an educational celebration of American History of African Cultural Origins (Black History) and has grown over the years. It now helps young leaders, ages 14 to 18, develop life long skills in their future careers and promotes community service and outreach skills.

This diverse organization provides job shadowing opportunities and lessons on succeeding in college. A wide array of topics are covered in their monthly meetings and include: how to set up a checking account and balance a checkbook, how to manage finances in college, choosing the right career and how to find a current job. The young leaders are taught networking skills and attend chamber events in the community to practice what they are learning.

The organization currently has 25 students, but they are seeking more young leaders to join the program. H.O.P.E. wants to enhance the lives of future generations and is providing this through their job shadowing and life lessons classes. The young leaders are expected to keep their grades up, set good leadership examples and commit to supporting the community through volunteer opportunities.

Guest speakers share information with the young leaders on a variety of life topics. Past speakers have focused on investment techniques, basic financial planning and budgeting. An upcoming topic is home ownership and how to start planning for that goal in your future.

Tri-Summit Bank, a sponsor of H.O.P.E., assists the young leaders by giving them the opportunity to open a checking account at the bank with an initial minimum $10 deposit.

"Any skill in life we feel like they can benefit from for a successful tomorrow, we try to teach them in H.O.P.E.," said Robinette, the founder and president.

This program requires dedication and a commitment to following through with community service activities.

Sierra Evans recently received well-deserved recognition for her participation in H.O.P.E. Evans, a Dobyns-Bennett graduate, was awarded the Joyce Dockery Memorial Scholarship for her stellar academic performance and dedication to enhancing her local community through many volunteer hours. While holding down two paid jobs, Evans continued to maintain a high GPA, was captain of the school color guard team and performed numerous volunteer duties for community organizations. She plans to pursue a career in the medical field at the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga.

Community members/businesses may contribute to the Joyce Dockery Memorial Scholarship fund by contacting Stella Robinette or Tri-Summit Bank. Additionally, contributions to the H.O.P.E. program can made at Regions Bank.

Local businesses can also assist H.O.P.E. by providing job shadowing and/or volunteer opportunities for their hard-working youth leaders.

This dynamic group is completely organized and run by volunteers, and all proceeds go towards the H.O.P.E. program or into the scholarship fund.

To follow the activities of H.O.P.E. youth leaders and for additional information, go to, or contact Robinette at 423-276-6541 or



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