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Art class volunteers to paint walls at counseling center
pl Havenskids
Helen's Haven director Terri Liles, back row left, poses with Heather Brancato, right, and her Taylor's Creek Elementary fifth-grade art students after the class helped paint murals on the walls of the counseling center. - photo by Phgoto by Patty Leon

It was nearly a year ago when Heather Brancato and a friend volunteered their time and skills to paint  murals on the walls of Helen's Haven, a counseling service for children that serves the Atlantic Judicial Circuit.
On Sept. 27, Brancato, entering her second year as an art teacher at Taylor's Creek Elementary, was back with a brush in hand and more help. Her fifth-grade art students joined Brancato in painting more murals and adding details to the existing walls.
"We are giving back to our community," Brancato said of the class’ volunteer effort. "I think it's a good experience to know that you can have fun while you are creating art and you are giving back to the community."
 Brancato, who currently is finishing her master’s degree, said teaching is a good way for an artist to practice the craft while engaging potential future artists.
She said she chose Helen's Haven because of the work they do with children.
"I really enjoy doing it," she said. "I know that Helen's Haven needs extra funding and this is a good way to help them out.”
Regarding her students she said, "I think these are good kids until they eat too many brownies."

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