February 28, 2020
SVSU students set to help communities across the U.S. during spring break
Sixty Saginaw Valley State University students will continue their predecessors’ tradition of spending spring break week providing support and good will to in-need communities across the nation.
SVSU’s Alternative Breaks program organized six groups — with 10 students participating in each — set to begin traveling when spring break week begins Saturday, Feb. 29.
When they arrive at their destinations, each team will spend the week supporting agencies and nonprofits engaging a variety of issues including providing shelter for those in need, empowering communities to overcome racism, and educating children about HIV and AIDS.
The following is a list of the planned Alternative Breaks trips and objectives:
- At the Capital Area Therapeutic Riding Association in Grantville, Pennsylvania, SVSU students will support individuals with special needs and disabilities by exploring non-traditional therapies that could benefit them. At the nonprofit, that “non-traditional therapy” often involves connecting visitors with animals such as horses, goats and cats.
- In Memphis, SVSU volunteers will provide education about HIV and AIDS to children at Hope House Memphis, a nonprofit that works with families affected by HIV and poverty.
- Students will join the effort to eliminate substandard housing and provide shelter for the homeless with the nonprofit known as Sussex County Habitat for Humanity in Georgetown, Delaware.
- With the help of Sisu Integrated Early Learning — a nonprofit in Gainesville, Georgia — students will advocate for education and literacy to the region’s youth.
- SVSU volunteers will support women both recovering from drug addiction and suffering from mental health disorders at the Nashville organization known as Mending Hearts Inc.
- In St. Louis, students will assist LifeWise STL, a nonprofit that helps in-need individuals and families prosper financially by addressing systemic barriers in society such as racism.
Alternative Breaks is a student-run organization that has organized volunteer efforts during breaks in SVSU’s school scheduling — including the winter break — since 2004.