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Community Business Woman Connects with Room #333 Students at EHS

Holly Dainton’s students have won the heart and support of a local business woman and artisan, Venita Allen. Mrs. Allen is the owner and artisan of lahVdah all natural soaps and beauty products, located in Hamilton, Ohio.  In May, Mrs. Dainton, one of our Special Education Teacher at EHS, reached out to Mrs. Allen about providing her students with a learning experience.  The purpose of the experience was to enhance the class’s understanding about being an entrepreneur.  

What occurred after Mrs. Allen agreed to assist with this request exceeded Mrs. Dainton’s expectations as well her students in Room #333!  But it didn’t stop there; Mrs. Allen’s amazing support and encouragement has continued through this holiday season.  

The first time our students met Mrs. Allen was a few days before Mother’s Day.  She and her team developed a special plan which allowed our special needs students to have a hands-on experience unlike any they’d had before.  Not only did the students get to bottle and label lotions to give as Mother’s Day gifts, but the personal attention they received from the lahVdah team made the visit even more special.  The students also learned how the business was started while hearing consistent reinforcement on the importance school plays in achieving your goals. “Venita believes everyone has the opportunity to make a positive impact. That day’s experience left a lasting impression that is still talked about in our classroom today. Her commitment to this belief is seen with every person with whom she interacts.  Her actions and words convey the passion she has for people and the products she creates.  Whether in her store in Hamilton, at her other location at Findlay Market or at her family’s neighborhood store (Allen’s Market), she understands the impact kindness has on people. She truly is a mentor and a role model for our students. The care and attention she gave and continues to give to my students reinforces the importance of treating everyone with respect,  genuine care and kindness,” said Mrs. Dainton.  

While that experience took place in May, Mrs. Allen’s support and interest in helping our students has continued. During this year’s fall Holiday Craft Show, sponsored by our Edgewood Athletic Boosters, lahVdah attended the show with their products.  Likewise, our Room #333 students, also put their talents to work and made Christmas crafts to sell.

During the event, Mrs. Allen stopped by our student’s table and admired the many items for sale.  At the end of the day, she stopped by to say farewell and that’s when another amazing opportunity took place. She asked if there were any plans for selling the remaining items. She felt they were unique and offered to sell them in her shop to help with the class’s fundraising efforts.

Within the first week the items were placed on display in lahVdah, sales exceeded expectations! 100% of the proceeds will go to Room #333 for their 2018 field trips, including a spring Day Prom event held in the Cincinnati area for high school students with disabilities.   We are very fortunate to have mentors like Venita Allen and her team interacting and supporting our students.