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03/05/2013

Students, Staff to Spend Spring Break Helping Others

Quick Facts

 Alternative Spring Break is coordinated by the Center for Career and Civic Engagement.
 This year's locations are Tuscaloosa, Ala., Washington, D.C. and Jacksonville, Fla.

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Alternative Spring Break 2012
ROCK HILL, S.C. – Thirty-five Winthrop University students and three staff members will participate in Alternative Spring Break March 9-16 during the university’s scheduled week-long spring break.

The community-service program, coordinated by the Center for Career and Civic Engagement, places students in communities to engage in service and experiential learning during spring break. Students perform short-term projects for community agencies and learn about issues such as literacy, poverty, racism, hunger, homelessness and the environment.

The objectives of a spring break program are to involve students in community-based service projects and to give students opportunities to learn about the problems faced by members of communities with whom they otherwise may have had little or no direct contact.

Students were able to choose from three service options this year. They are:

* Tuscaloosa, Ala.: In April 2012 a massive storm swept through the southern United States producing several severe tornadoes. In the Tuscaloosa - Birmingham area there was an EF-4 tornado which left substantial destruction and changed the lives of those who live in the area forever. This tornado alone killed 65 people and injured 1,500 people. The Winthrop group will be working with the Tuscaloosa Area Volunteer Reception Center to help rehabilitate houses, remove debris and sort warehouse goods.

* Washington, D.C.: This patriotic destination is host to some of the greatest political figures and decision makers. Unfortunately, some natives of D.C. do not share in our capital’s abundant resources. The Washington Post reports that approximately one out of every five residents lives at or below the poverty threshold. This alternative spring break experience will partner with The Steinbruck Center, an organization that advocates for the homeless and poverty stricken populations of D.C. Service will include working with transitional housing, soup kitchens, craft collectives and advocacy professionals.

* Jacksonville, Fla.: In Jacksonville, service will be done in partnership with Fresh Ministries whose mission is to build hope and change lives. The Winthrop group will perform a variety of service projects around the area.

Trip participants will present their service projects and takeaways from their experiences on Thursday, March 28, at 11 a.m. in G01 Owens Hall.

For more information about the program, please contact Laura Foster, volunteer and community service program director, at 803/323-2141 or e-mail her.

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