NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. – More than 3,000 members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority will attend the group’s 79th North Atlantic Regional Conference at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center from March 24-28. The staging of the conference, which is close to the nation’s capital and to Maryland’s state capital, will give Alpha Kappa Alpha women opportunities to engage in the sorority’s Extraordinary Service Program (ESP).

ESP is based on five platforms of economic empowerment and service to the community: supporting the non-traditional entrepreneur, providing economic keys to success, cultivating the economic growth of the Black family, advancing technology education for undergraduate students and managing health resources.

Evelyn Sample-Oates, the sorority’s North Atlantic regional director, has charged members to “enthusiastically serve pediatrics” by donating 2,010 items to the Children’s National Medical Center: essential children’s clothing, gift cards from retail and grocery stores and personal care kits with toothbrushes, soaps, lotions and other products.

The region’s donations will supply Children’s National’s “Dr. Bear’s Closet,” which provides non-medical items to thousands of patients and their families who are at the hospital during extended periods due to the unique and innovative treatment offered there.

At 2 p.m. March 24, Sample-Oates presented the donations to Julie Hudtloff, Children’s National Medical Center’s volunteer services director, at the main hospital.

“Alpha Kappa Alpha enthusiastically supports Children’s National Medical Center and its efforts to make families as comfortable as possible, while they experience difficult times during a child’s illness,” said Sample-Oates.

On the morning of March 24, Sample-Oates also visited the Maryland State House in Annapolis. There she met with the Women’s Caucus, followed by introductions on the Senate floor by Sen. Verna Jones and on the House floor by Del. Barbara Robinson. Sen. Jones is also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.

Conference attendees will attend the annual business meeting and enjoy a host of activities, including special appearances by members of Alpha Kappa Alpha – Roslyn Brock, chair of the NAACP board, and Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, the mayor of Baltimore.

For more information, visit Facebook: AKA’s on the National Harbor.