Students Perform 1,400 Hours of Community Service on Alternative Spring Break Trips

For the fifth consecutive year, many Eastern Kentucky University students took Alternative Spring Break trips this year – marking the largest number of teams from EKU to do so. 

Two teams traveled to New York City to work with two organizations, God’s Love We Deliver and GMHC Inc., on HIV/AIDS awareness, prevention, and advocacy.  Two other teams traveled to Charleston, S.C., to work with Sea Island Habitat for Humanity for the third straight year.  EKU also sent its first team to Washington, D. C., to work with the Pilgrimage on issues of homelessness and with KidPower’s afterschool programming.

Collectively, ASB participants served almost 1,400 hours during the week, a value of approximately $29,000 for the service agencies. Several students were repeating the alternative break experience, including several on their third trip.

Three teams were completely student led – again the most ever from EKU – and all trips included at least on student co-leader. 

“ASB trips are not just a chance to see something new geographically,” said Student Trip Leader Miles Owen.  “They provide an opportunity to see someplace new in yourself.”

Upcoming Summer Service Trips to New Orleans in May will complete Eastern’s first year of year-round alternative break programming – fall, winter, spring, summer and weekends – something not offered by most schools in Kentucky.  The New Orleans teams will work with the St. Bernard Project as they continue to rebuild homes lost during Katrina. At the current pace of recovery, it is estimated that it will take another 16 years to complete the recovery effort.

The EKU Alternative Break Program places teams of students in communities across the United States and the world to engage in volunteer service and experiential learning.  An EKU Alternative Break trip is an immersion experience in the community – students will experience different cultural, environmental, and socioeconomic backgrounds.  While meeting identified communities needs through service, students will learn about the social and cultural issues facing the host communities.

Published on March 26, 2011