Alternative Spring Break
Alternative Spring Break
More than 50 members of the Emmanuel community participated in this year's Alternative Spring Break (ASB) program, which sent groups of students, alumni and staff to service sites in Arizona, West Virginia and South Dakota during the week of March 7th.
"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 ninth-straight year, Emmanuel volunteers traveled to Phoenix, Ariz. to assist 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 worked 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 spent 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 that traveled to West Virginia stayed and worked with the staff of the Laughlin Memorial Chapel, located in the urban core of Wheeling. Volunteers helped in the renovation of deteriorating housing within the town, participated 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 provided service at the Catholic Neighborhood Center, a soup kitchen next to the Chapel.
New this year, groups participated in a service trip to Eagle Butte, South Dakota. Volunteers worked alongside the Cheyenne River Youth Project, which was founded in January 1988 in response to the community's need for more services that support struggling children and their families. Volunteers worked with the children in the after-school program, helped with fundraising and assisted with projects within the community, including volunteering with partner agencies like the Elderly Nutrition Center, located directly across the street from The Cheyenne River Youth Project. The group also had the chance to hear speakers from the community talk about the history of the reservation, political and cultural details along with legal aspects of land claims and treaties.
Emmanuel hosted its annual Alternative Spring Break Commissioning in the College's Chapel on March 1st. Students and staff who will be taking part in a service trip to the Dominican Republic this summer were also recognized during the event.