An Evening of Giving at Hiatt Middle School

11467480294_29d991eaf7_kThursday night, Hiatt Middle School will not only host their families for a holiday party, for the second time in two years, they’ll open their doors to the entire community.

The holiday party is one of the biggest Viva East Bank! events of the year.  Boys and Girls Club will be hosting a craft activity, East High students will be performing live music in the gym and a raffle will provide ten families with a free holiday turkey.  The party will include everything from pictures with Santa & Mrs. Claus to a free chili dinner.  A donation drive has gathered hundreds of winter warmth items for students who attend schools feeding into East High School.  Those items will be distributed at the party to families with children who need an extra layer.

Viva East Bank!, a coalition of residents and community partners working together to revitalize three east-side neighborhoods, has been hard at work since the start of the school year to unite the Capitol Park, Capitol East and MLK Jr. Park (collectively known as East Bank) in revitalizing their neighborhoods.  One of the priorities residents have identified is bringing more community programming into their schools, churches, parks and other public spaces.

East Bank neighborhoods are some of Des Moines’ most under-resourced areas. Bringing residents, nonprofits, corporations and volunteers from the community together means change can happen faster and more efficiently.

Des Moines Public Schools is a partner in Viva East Bank! and will officially launch Parent University in January, 2015, something that provides all families in the East Bank neighborhoods with free sessions in a wide range of areas including health, finances and family relationships.  All sessions provide a meal and free childcare to participants. Parent University information will be available to all attendees on December 18.

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