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Service-Learning & Volunteer Programs

Alternative Break Trips

Contact Service-Learning & Volunteer Programs  

Service-Learning & Volunteer Programs

Office Location:
715 S. New St.
Commonwealth Hall, Lower Level
Enter at Student Health Services
West Chester, PA 19383


Phone: 610-436-3379
Fax: 610-430-5600

Alternative Break Trips

2019 Spring Break Trips

Addressing Issues of Affordable Housing with Habitat for Humanity 

Students painting a ceiling

In partnership with Habitat for Humanity, WCU students participating in this trip will travel to build affordable houses for families living with a low-income or facing significant financial challenges.

Students will be partnering with a locally run affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, a non-profit, ecumenical Christian housing organization that works in partnership with people to build simple, affordable, energy-efficient houses. Habitat for Humanity sells the houses that are built at cost (no profit) with no interest charged to low-income families who qualify. Students on this trip will work alongside local community members and future homeowners to provide affordable housing options for those affected by poverty in the south, while also learning about the causes of issues of affordable housing through community engagement activities.

Trip Leader
Gabrielle Mason

Advocating for Women's Rights through Political Engagement in Washington DC

Group Photo

WCU Students participating in this trip will engage with non-profit organizations across Washinton DC to explore our current political landscape while advocating for social justice and Women's Rights in today's society. 

Students will have the opportunity to volunteer and engage in educational conversations with various nonprofit organizations throughout this experience, such as Planned Parenthood, Institute for Women's Policy Research, American Association of University Women (AAUW), NARAL: Pro-Choice Maryland, United for Reproductive Gender Equity (URGE) and others.  Topics explored on this trip span reproductive justice, pay equity, educational access, research & policy, and so much more.  This trip is co-sponsored by the Center for Women and Gender Equity.

Trip Leaders
Mik Deiter and India Washington

Serving the LGBTQ Community Impacted by HIV/AIDS in Pittsburgh

Group Photo

Students will unite to educate the community about preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS, serve individuals living with and affected by HIV and AIDS, and learn how sexual health intersects with homelessness in Pittsburgh, PA by working with the Allies for Health + Wellbeing and other local organizations serving LGBTQ+ individuals.

Currently, over 1 million Americans are living with HIV. One out of five people do not know they are infected, which greatly contributes to the 50,000 new cases every year. Historically HIV has disproportionately impacted segments of the LGBTQ community, and that could continue  when considering the 40% of homeless youth who identify as LGBTQ.  During the week of service, the group will work to increase public awareness of HIV/AIDS and educate the community about the importance of sexual health and diminishing the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.  The group will also address the alarming LGBTQ homelessness rate by volunteering with shelters whose mission is to serve that population in Pittsburgh.

Trip Leader
Kay May

Empowering Youth through Financial Literacy Education with Junior Achievement in NYC

Students in Classroom

WCU Students participating on this trip will work with Junior Achievement of NYC to engage children in local schools through academic enrichment activities that improve social skill development, self-esteem, and civic engagement.

Junior Achievement of New York’s mission is to inspire and prepare young people to succeed in a global economy. Junior Achievement of NYC is the local affiliate of Junior Achievement USA, the nation’s largest organization dedicated to providing students with work readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy education. Participants of this trip will teach lessons in classrooms spanning K-12 students through curriculums, activities, and games.  Each lesson will focus on exposing children to such life skills as budgeting, teamwork, and communication while learning about their local and national economies.

Trip Leaders
Cameron Bosserman and Allena McCloud

 

2019 Summer Trips

Creating Sustainable Food Resources in Urban Communities with PHS in Philadelphia

Students in a garden

Through community gardening and education with the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS) in Philadelphia, PA, students on this trip will explore connections between areas of poverty and urban food deserts while also working to promote civic empowerment of both trip participants and community members.

During the week of service, the group will support the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s City Harvest Program in their urban farming efforts. With training from PHS staff, inmates of the Philadelphia Prison System grow seedlings at a prison greenhouse, and thousands more seedlings are started at neighborhood-based greenhouses run by nonprofit partners. The inmates receive training in gardening and basic landscaping along with valuable life-skills lessons. Students will help plant the 250,000 seedlings which are then transplanted and grown in 140 urban farms and gardens throughout the city. Participating growers distribute the fresh produce in their communities, through food cupboard donations and at farmers markets.

Trip Leader
Abby Kennedy

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