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This coming spring break will see the embarkment of four Y-Serve trips. Student leaders of all years have stepped forward to lead these trips to a variety of locations and for various purposes. This past Thursday, Jan. 23, Y-Serve held the first meeting announcing the four options and calling the student body to join.

All four trips will be working with different organizations and programs. The Jubilee Partners trip, lead by first-years James Dunmore and Reuben Peachey-Stoner, will allow students to work in a Christian service community dedicated to helping refugee families and assisting them as they integrate into the United States.

The Habitat for Humanity Collegiate Challenge trip will find students building and repairing homes in communities in Valdosta, Georgia.

When asked what led to the cooperation with Habitat for Humanity, first-year leader Aaron Zimmerman said, “We always planned on disaster relief work. We … checked with Habitat for Humanity, and that’s where we found the Collegiate Challenge.”

The Collegiate Challenge is a program specifically designed by Habitat for Humanity for college students to volunteer over spring break. This program has existed since the late ’80s, and is still going strong.

“It can be eye opening for some people to see the reality of situations others are in,” said Zimmerman. “It’s an amazing experience to see the hope that we are able to bring to these people.”

Led by senior Kayla Sauder and sophomore Lydia Chappell Deckert, a trip will also travel to LaGrange, Georgia to work with the Casa Alterna organization. Casa Alterna seeks to work with immigrant families from Latin America.

Director of Multicultural Studies Celeste Thomas and senior Tae Dews will lead a trip focusing on the history of the Civil Rights Movement in the southern states.

“Our biggest goal for students during our trip is to learn more about the history of black and African Americans and also just American history,” said Dews when asked what inspired the trip. “By knowing our history, we will be able to work together in order to stop the repeating macro- and micro-aggression that people of color face on a regular day.”

While the Civil Rights Tour is the only Y-Serve trip not actively going into communities to do work, Dews described service of the Tour as “what we bring back to our campus community.”

The various trips this spring break allow for opportunities for everyone to learn, serve, and grow. There is still plenty of time to sign up for Y-Serve trips at the Student Life Suite in the University Commons, so head on over.

Rachael Brenneman

Opinion Editor

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