Founded in 2008 by Stella Robinette, H.O.P.E. (Help Our Potential Evolve) strives to identify and train young leaders between the ages of 12 and 18, and works to help them develop skills in their future careers while also promoting community service.
One of the highest honors a H.O.P.E. participant can achieve is receiving the Joyce Dockery Memorial Scholarship, named after a very special woman who believed strongly in the mission and purpose of the organization.
The Joyce Dockery /H.O.P.E. Scholarship is an award in the amount of $500 presented to a qualified graduating senior who has followed the H.O.P.E. Youth Leadership Program and has a 3.0 or higher GPA. Additionally, the nominee must be a H.O.P.E. Leader, must follow the TN/VA Scholar Program guidelines and must have been actively involved in the H.O.P.E. Leadership program. Recipients are approved by the Board of Directors upon meeting the scholarship qualifications.
The 2014 Joyce Dockery Memorial Scholarship recipient is Quindalyn Perry.
"Quindalyn has been a great leader in the program," says Stella Robinette, founder and president of H.O.P.E. "She has also told us that she is staying on to volunteer with the program."
"I saw a lot of my friends involved in the program and I enjoyed what they did," explains Perry. "I talked to my parents about it and we talked to Mrs. Stella and learned more about the program. I've developed leadership skills and life skills. I've also learned how to help others without being told to [do it]... I've learned how to save money and keep it in the bank. I've learned CPR, which will help me in my career path, and I also have learned the proper way to dress, sit and eat at a dinner."
In addition to her school work and leadership classes, Perry also "job shadows" twice a week at the Kingsport Child Development Center in preparation for a career in Early Childhood Education.
"Quindalyn is a remarkable young woman," says Cindy Housewright, Director of the Center. "She is so polite and responsible and, when she takes on a project, she always does a great job."
Perry seems to have been preparing for a career in education for most of her life.
"Growing up, I was always babysitting for a family member or a family friend and I've always loved being around children, showing them love, and teaching them things I hope they will never forget. After I graduate from college, I hope to become a kindergarten teacher," she explained.
And where does she see herself in 10 years?
"In 10 years, I hopefully see myself happily married, working in an elementary school," Perry says with a big smile.
The Joyce Dockery Memorial Scholarship and H.O.P.E. Volunteer Awards will be presented at a fundraising dinner to be held May 16 in the Press Room of Food City, 300 Clinchfield Street. Doors open at 6 p.m. The silent auction begins at 6:30 p.m. with dinner at 7. The awards and the live auction with Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey, auctioneer, will follow.
Tickets are $25 and may be ordered by calling 423-276-6541.