Students Get Set for Alternative Spring Break
March 01, 2012
More than 50 members of the Emmanuel community will participate in this year's Alternative Spring Break (ASB) program, which will send groups of students and staff to service sites in Arizona, West Virginia, Louisiana, as well as around Boston during the week of March 4th. Emmanuel hosted its annual Alternative Spring Break Commissioning in the College's Chapel on March 1st, recognizing this year's participants.
"We are thrilled to have such excitement and interest in Alternative Spring Break each year," said Associate Director of Community Service and Service Learning Deirdre Bradley-Turner. "Our students work hard for the week at their various sites serving those in need and learning more about homelessness, extreme poverty, environmental concerns and immigration. Emmanuel's long history of service is carried on each year through our students' admirable dedication to service."
For the 10th-straight year, Emmanuel volunteers will travel to Phoenix, Ariz., to assist at Andre House and Society of St. Vincent de Paul. Andre House is a nonprofit organization, sponsored by the Priests and Brothers of Holy Cross from the University of Notre Dame, that serves the poor and homeless. Students will work directly with the Andre House staff doing office work, laundry, clothes sorting and distribution and food preparation and service. With the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, a Catholic lay organization, Emmanuel volunteers will spend the week performing several different tasks, including: food preparation and service, working in their thrift stores and inventory and containerizing in their food bank.
The group traveling to West Virginia will stay and work with the staff of the Laughlin Memorial Chapel, located in the urban core of Wheeling. Volunteers will help in the renovation of deteriorating housing within the town, participate in the Chapel's daily after-school program featuring academic enrichment programs, an achievement program, art and music enrichment programs, and evening youth programs, and provide service at the Catholic Neighborhood Center, a soup kitchen next to the Chapel.
Emmanuel will once again return to New Orleans, Louisiana, after a one-year hiatus, having sent a group to Eagle Butte, South Dakota, last year. The Emmanuel volunteers will assist with the St. Bernard Project (SBP), an award-winning rebuilding, nonprofit organization whose mission is to remove physical, mental and emotional barriers for vulnerable families, senior citizens and disabled residents who are struggling to recover from the devastation and trauma caused by Hurricane Katrina. The volunteers will work "in the field" around the city, helping to rebuild while also providing homeowners with support and encouragement during the emotional rebuilding process.
Additionally, Emmanuel is hosting a Boston ASB group this year in collaboration with the Colleges of the Fenway. The Boston group will live in the Jean Yawkey Center for the week and serve at various sites in the city with a focus on children in poverty, including Boston Catholic Charities Nazareth Residence for Mothers and Children and Cradles to Crayons.