Upward Bound program sponsors annual craft show

Published 12:06 pm Saturday, November 10, 2018

by Kenya Smith/Intern

The annual Christmas in Our Hometown Craft Show took place on Oct. 27 in the Regional Workforce Development Center at Paul D. Camp Community College. For seven years, Shirley Billups has organized the event due to her love for arts and crafts, and her desire to give crafters an opportunity to display and sell their masterpieces. Attendees stopped by the craft show to check out some locally crafted items such as jewelry, toiletries, clothing, accessories, home décor and even some homemade edibles. There were even opportunities for attendees to win prizes through raffles.

This year, Paul D. Camp’s Upward Bound program sponsored the Christmas in Our Hometown Craft Show. The program also present the Hometown Annual Spring Fling Craft Show this past April. Upward Bound was created to help high school students pursue a post-secondary education upon graduation. The program serves 50 students from Franklin, Southampton and Lakeland high schools. Any student who participates in the program receives the following services:

  • An intensive educational summer non-residential component at the Franklin campus for six weeks;
  • An academic year component where students attend sessions on selected Saturday’s each month to receive additional instruction in mathematics, English, science, social studies, Spanish, reading and SAT preparation when needed;
  • An organized guidance program designed for educational, career and personal counseling with emphasis on the total development of the student;
  • A variety of cultural events on and off-campus;
  • Financial aid planning and preparation for seniors and parents enrolled in the program; and
  • College visits and tours

While the crafters and vendors gained clientele at the craft show, the Upward Bound program also gained some benefits as well.

“One thing that Upward Bound got from sponsoring the craft show is the marketing,” said Travis Parker, who is the director for the program. “We also share in the proceeds with Ms. Billups, and those proceeds, which is a large portion, will go to expenses such as college tour trips and expenses for the six-week summer program, which is something that is required for us to do.”

As a result, both the crafters and the Upward Bound were amazed with the turnout.

“We had a great turnout. I would say more than 300 people attended the craft show and we were definitely pleased with the outcome,” Parker said.