SMU Alternative Breaks for Winter and Spring

Deadlines and dates for alternative breaks for Winter 2009 and Spring 2010.

List of Site Locations: 2009-2010 Trips

Winter Break Trip - Application Deadline November 16, 2009

December 17 – 22, 2009

Disaster Relief in Galveston, TX

On September 13, 2008, Hurricane Ike smashed into the Texas coast as a Category 2 hurricane — left millions without power and destroyed homes and businesses along the Gulf Coast with powerful winds, rain and floodwaters. As a response to this devastation, SMU Alternative Break Program is planning a winter break trip to perform hurricane relief in the affected area. Students will work with Community Collaborations International and other local organizations to complete reconstruction projects including installing drywall, painting, yard work, and other construction activities on homes. Students will also get the opportunity to work with Head Start, in school programs and after school programs in the area. For more information about Community Collaborations International, visit the website at For more information about this trip, contact site leader Robert Paterno at

Domestic Spring Break Trips - Application Deadline February 1, 2010

March 6 – 14, 2010

Affordable Housing in Denver, CO

The mission of Habitat for Humanity of Metro Denver is to work in partnership with faith communities and people from all walks of life to build decent, affordable homes in which people can live and grow into all that God intends. Alternative Breaks will be branching out this year to work with Habitat for Humanity in a new location: Denver, CO! We will be contributing to the 370+ houses that Denver H4H has built over years. Not to mention be able to enjoy the great outdoors and the city! It is not required that students have prior experience to working with Habitat for Humanity, but greatly welcomed! If you would like more information about the trip please contact Kathleen Farmer at .

Environmental Preservation in Coker Creek, TN

Nestled in the Appalachian Mountains in Tennessee, Participants will be working with the United States Forest Service to clear trails in the Cherokee National Forest, providing river work on the Tellico River, and doing odds and ends on the 300-acre grounds where we will be staying. Participants will learn about environmental issues and how to best address them, as well as gain experience from working with organizations whose aims are to make the world a much more beautiful and healthy place to live. For more information on this trip, please contact Kate Kirk at .

Education and Youth Empowerment in Taos, NM

The mission of Roots & Wings Community School (RWCS) is to nurture and prepare young people in a highly personalized, "hands-on" learning environment so that each student may become a self-confident, competent, respectful and contributing member of our society. At RWCS, they accomplish this mission by enrolling a small group of students at a time and creating a compelling, project-based educational environment in a farm and wilderness setting. Expected work includes: working on the community garden, one-on-one work with students, and other projects around the school. This trip is for anyone who enjoys working with children and improving the community, and more importantly, making an impact in the lives of the children. More information about Roots and Wings can be found here: . For more information regarding this trip, please contact site leader Austin Gibb at .

HIV/AIDS Outreach in Los Angeles, CA

AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA) is a non-profit community-based organization that provides vital services to men, women and children living with HIV and AIDS in Los Angeles County. APLA provides treatment and prevention education as well as advocates on behalf of people living with AIDS. Students will work in the food bank, as well as the housing, publications, special events, and walking divisions. The organization's website is For more information regarding this trip, please contact site leader Matt Gayer at .

International Spring Break Trip - Application Deadline December 1, 2009

March 6 – 14, 2010

Poverty and Youth Services in Xalapa, Mexico

Xalapa, a small, scenic town away from the huband pollution of a large city is situated in between Mexico City and Veracruznear the Gulf of Mexico. The city of Xalapa is located beneath the volcanic peaks of the Sierra Madre Oriental, at an elevation that oscillates from 1400 meters to 1700 meters above sea level, and is surrounded in lush tropical vegetation. Caritas, which in Spanish means little faces, is a non-profit umbrellaorganization that works on behalf of lower income families, orphans, and the medically ill. Through out the week we will be working at an orphanage, serving food at cafeteria to the homeless, and helping out at the clinic. On our free time, we will tour the city and on our free day, go repelling and enjoy the vista. Apart from the sense of achievement and goodwill which we will obtain by serving others, we will enjoy great home cooked Mexican cuisine on a daily basis. For more information regarding this trip, please contact site leader Jose Campos at .

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