University of Delaware Alternative Breaks

2021 Programs

Statement about COVID-19 9/21/2020

Dear UDaB Community,

 

Due to the current uncertainty of the global situation, we do not feel confident in being able to deliver a safe and effective winter UDaB experience and have made the difficult decision to cancel winter UDaB programs for the 2020-2021 year. This is not a decision that we make lightly, but one that we make in the interest of being respectful of the time and effort of our participants, leadership team, and especially community partners. We know that this is most likely an extremely disappointing decision for the UD community, but feel that given our current understanding of the situation that this is the decision that most closely aligns with our values as an organization. 

 

UDaB remains committed to our mission to promote social justice and develop a community of active citizens, and we are planning alternate programming for the winter which will allow us to carry out this mission in a way which honors our core values. As an organization we want to continue to ensure the health and safety of all of our participants and all of our community partners, and will be keeping this desire at the center of all of our actions moving forward this year. We are also in the process of reaching out to the organizations we partner with during the winter to look into virtual opportunities to support them and their work in their home communities. Although we are not running winter weeks of in-person service this year, we are working hard to put into place virtual education and service opportunities for winter engagement. We recognize that the UDaB community cares deeply about service and social justice and is looking for accessible ways to engage with this work during this time of uncertainty. Please stay tuned, as virtual opportunities for learning and service are coming, and we are excited to see what you all do with them!

 

Peace, Love, UDaB,

2020-2021 UDaB Senior Leadership

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Spring 2020 Programs

Sowing the Seed for Healthy Lifestyles: Food and Nutritional Insecurity

AMI Farm at Augusta Health

Fishersville, VA

Allegheny Mountain Institute (AMI) is an educational non-profit organization with the mission to cultivate healthy communities through food and education. The AMI Farm at Augusta Health is a joint venture of AMI and Augusta Health to raise awareness about the importance of healthy eating and sustainable agricultural practices. AMI and Augusta Health share the vision that access to excellent care includes access to healthy food. Participants may perform service including, but not limited to, large mulching and bed-shaping projects, preparing the field for planting season, and helping to plant and transplant crops and flowers. Throughout the program, participants will explore the contemporary issues surrounding food security and nutritional health. (12 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spot Available

Estimated Fee: $585

Site Leaders: Megan Muench and Sarah Tyms

Appreciating Appalachian Culture and Addressing Rural Poverty

Appalachia Service Project

Jonesville, VA

Appalachia Service Project (ASP) brings volunteers from around the nation to work alongside the community in rural Central Appalachia to adinpair homes for families in low income communities. ASP aims to make homes safer, warmer and drier for homeowners while fostering a spirit of love, acceptance and hopefulness to respond to the community’s need for adequate housing. ASP encourages people to act responsibly in the face of human need and injustice. Participants will work with local community members in Jonesville, VA, on housing projects using hard skills to build sufficient housing. They will also examine the underlying structures and systems related to rural poverty and housing insecurity. (19 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spots Available

Estimated Fee: $635

Site Leaders: Carly Sullivan and Rachel Northrup

Planting for the Future: Environmental Education and Stewardship

Apple Ridge Farm

Roanoke, VA

Apple Ridge Farm is a camp that aims to transform the lives of its community’s underserved children and their families through engagement in unparalleled educational, cultural & outdoor experiences. They strive to develop the self-esteem of inner-city children through academic support and participation in environmental stewardship. Participants will support Apple Ridge Farm by maintaining and assisting in hard skills service around the premises. They will also learn about environmental stewardship, water quality and sustainability in rural communities. Throughout the program, participants will discuss environmental stewardship as it relates to justice. (12 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spot Available

Estimated Fee: $615

Site Leaders: Abby Huebler and Lucy Qi

Access and Equity in the Cass Community of Detroit

Cass Community Social Services

Detroit, MI

Cass Community Social Services is a Detroit-based agency dedicated to providing food, housing, health services, and job programs to local members of the Cass Community of Detroit. Cass consists of 13 locations, all with the mission of creating a more wholesome community environment fit with resources designed to enable its members to better the lives of themselves and their families. Participants can expect to be involved in a wide array of different activities including, but not limited to, preparing meals for the community in the Cass kitchen, collecting litter around the Cass properties, assisting in projects with the Cass Green Industries program which focuses on creating and selling environmentally friendly products, and facilitating activities in the Cass Activity Center for adults with developmental disabilities. This program will facilitate participants learning about the numerous social issues that affect the Detroit area, such as systemic racial injustice, homelessness, food insecurity, and environmental discrimination. (12 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spots Available

Estimated Fee: $465

Site Leaders: Cailin Shallow and Kate O’Hara

Restoring the Chesapeake Bay: Exploring Policies and Fighting Environmental Discrimination

Chesapeake Bay Foundation

Annapolis, MD

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) fights to restore the Chesapeake Bay through effective, science-based solutions to the pollution of the bay and its tributaries. CBF’s motto and guiding mission is “Save the Bay.” This mantra is a call to action for the residents of Chesapeake’s six-state, 64,000 mile watershed to protect the more than 18 million people and 3,000 species of plants and animals which call the Chesapeake Bay watershed home. Participants will engage in direct service by planting and maintaining forested buffer, shaking and seeding oyster shells in CBF’s oyster restoration efforts and working at CBF’s sustainable farm, Clagett Farms. Participants will discuss the intricacies of bay restoration efforts and connect it to larger issues of environmental justice. (19 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spot Available

Estimated Fee: $350

Site Leaders: Erin Jackson and Sam Burrows

Unpacking Nutritional Access: Food Insecurity and Chronic Illness

Community Servings

Boston, MA

Community Servings is a not-for-profit food and nutrition program throughout Massachusetts and Rhode Island that provides services for individuals and families living with critical and chronic illnesses.  Community Servings’ goals are to help our clients maintain their health and dignity and to preserve the integrity of their families through culturally appropriate, home-delivered meals, nutrition education, and other community programs. Participants will be working in Community Servings’ kitchen and other local food pantries where they will prepare and package meals to be delivered to the community. They will learn more about issues of food insecurity, nutritional access, and building interdependent communities. (12 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spot Available

Estimated Fee: $495

Site Leaders: Jessie Bolton and Kristin Smith

Not Just a Gay Man’s Problem: Exploring Historical Roots and Contemporary Advocacy of the HIV/AIDS Epidemic

Gay Men’s Health Crisis

New York, NY

The CDC estimates that more than one million people are living with HIV in the United States and each year an estimated 56,300 Americans become newly infected. The AIDS crisis is not over, with more than 18,000 people with AIDS dying each year in the US. The Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC) is the world’s first and leading provider of HIV/AIDS prevention, care, and advocacy. On the program, participants will serve and eat lunch in the community dining hall, pack safe-sex kits, file in the legal department, and help out with other jobs in the facility. They will have opportunities to learn from GMHC leaders and other New York-based advocacy groups, to better understand both the historical context and contemporary organizing to address this epidemic. Regardless of your familiarity with the history of the AIDS epidemic, this program will provide an opportunity for participants to discuss not just the history of AIDS activism in New York in the 1980s and 90s, but current public health and social justice issues on the local, national, and global levels. (12 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spots Available

Estimated Fee: $550

Site Leaders: Andrew Bochnovich and Abby Farkash

Deconstructing Systems: Housing Insecurity in Sussex County

Habitat for Humanity

Sussex County, DE

Habitat for Humanity aims to provide decent, affordable housing for families and to support sustainable and transformative development. Habitat strives to build homes and communities and to promote the dignity and agency of homeowners. Homeowners build their own homes alongside volunteers and receive an affordable mortgage. Participants will assist in the construction of homes in the area of Sussex County, DE. They will perform hard skills tasks to build more affordable housing for individuals and families experiencing economic inequality. Participants will discuss and reflect on the systems and policies that contribute to housing insecurity and economic disparities. (12 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spot Available

Estimated Program Fee: $430

Site Leaders: Kaleb Frey and Michaela Dougherty

Reopening the Doors to Opportunity: Developing Community after Substantial Job Loss

H.O.M.E.

Orland, ME

H.O.M.E. is an organization in Orland, ME, that helps to address the needs of the community after a local paper mill closing caused the loss of 700 jobs in the area. H.O.M.E works to provide services to the community including temporary housing for families, a daycare, a thrift shop, and soup kitchen. H.O.M.E. strives to develop a community of support for the people in Hancock County to empower them through their financial and social services. Participants could work on various projects that include constructing houses, harvesting wood, shelter work, and more. Throughout the program, participants will discuss the various personal, social and legal complications that individuals in poverty face. (12 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spot Available

Estimated Fee: $335

Site Leaders: Francesca Capucciati and Maureen French

Creating Comprehensive Solutions: Community Development in the Bronx

Part of the Solution (POTS)

Bronx, NY

POTS’ mission is to be a loving community in the Bronx that nourishes the basic needs and hungers of all who come to its doors. POTS believes individuals and families can move from crisis to stability, and ultimately to self-sufficiency, if they have access to resources, programs, and services that meet their needs. Some of POTS’ services include a food pantry and community dining space, case management and legal services, medical and dental clinic,and workforce development. Participants will support POTS’ mission by serving meals in their community dining areas, stocking their food pantry, and assisting with their clothing drive. This program will focus on holistic community development and help participants understand the ways in which organizations can address the varied and diverse needs of individuals while also promoting justice and empowerment. (12 participants)

New Program|Open Spots Available

Estimated Fee: $550

Site Leaders: Emma Lesnevich and Helen Mae Lynch

Navigating Identity and Intersectionality in the Steel City

Various Community Partners

Pittsburgh, PA

As a result of a city wide shift from industry to technology, Pittsburgh has experienced major changes in its community landscape. In order to learn more about the various intersecting issues impacting the local community, participants will engage in service opportunities alongside multiple community partners in and around Pittsburgh. Potential service projects include working at an urban farm, teaching lessons at after-school programs, and home repair for vulnerable communities. Participants will develop a geospatial lens through which they will analyze root causes of current social issues. They will be challenged to consider the varying identities within Pittsburgh and the history of the community in the context of current challenges. (12 participants)

New Program|Open Spot Available

Estimated Fee: $315

Site Leaders: Emma Groman and Alexa Yuen

Exploring Complexities: Resource Accessibility & the LGBTQ+ Community in the Capital

Various Service Partners

Washington, DC

Participants will engage with a number of community partners in the D.C. area. SMYAL, Whitman-Walker Health, and Casa Ruby center around LGBTQ+ services with focuses on youth empowerment and housing to homeless youth in the community; health and wellness services to all with special expertise HIV care; and social services and programs catering to under-served communities, respectively. SOME (So Others May Eat) works with poor and homeless populations to both meet their daily needs and break the cycle of homeless with holistic housing, job training, and treatment services. Housing Up engages homeless and at-risk families with comprehensive support services and housing. Through engaging in intersectional issues with a multitude of partners, participants will be able to make connections between topics through service and reflection, as well as an embracive place-based perspective on social justice. (12 participants)

New Program|Open Spots Available

Estimated Fee: $525

Site Leaders: Taylor Garbowski and Izzy DeFrancesco

Hunger and Homelessness on the Hill: Direct Service and Advocacy in D.C.

The Pilgrimage

Washington, DC

The Pilgrimage strives to build communities where people are invested in eradicating hunger, homelessness, and poverty with a deep understanding of the myths, stereotypes, and systemic structures that create these inequalities. The Pilgrimage seeks to embolden and empower young people and adults and strives towards a more equitable and just world through service, social awareness and reflection. Last year, participants worked with a host of local organizations to help in soup kitchens and homeless shelters, work with the elderly in the community, prepare and package meals, and engage in an advocacy day on Capitol Hill. Participants will focus in reflection on issues such as poverty, homelessness, and hunger in Washington, D.C. and the systems impacting these issues. (19 participants)

Returning Site |Open Spots Available

Estimated Fee: $575

Site Leaders: Kim Begley and Meredith Scanlon

Valuing Cherokee Voices: Cultural and Environmental Conservation

Once Upon a Time

Maryville, TN

Once Upon a Time is focused on the environmental conservation, cultural conservation, and cultural education of the region, with a focus on cultural education on the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI). Once Upon a Time strives to protect the environment and cultural heritage that is native to the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains through various service projects. In previous years, programs have worked on invasive species removal and trail restoration in the Cherokee National Forest and within the Snowbird Community of the EBCI, as well as homesteading projects focused on learning more about Appalachian culture. Participants will reflect upon topics such as environmental justice and cultural conservation in the Cherokee community. (19 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spot Available

Estimated Fee: $625

Site Leaders: Emily Stuebing and Raymond Smith

Growing Community: Local, Sustainable, and Equitable Food Systems

Urban Tree Connection

Philadelphia, PA

The Urban Tree Connection (UTC) works with residents in Philadelphia’s historically marginalized urban communities to revitalize their neighborhoods by transforming abandoned open spaces into safe and functional places that inspire and promote positive human interaction. UTC works with residents of West Philadelphia’s Haddington neighborhood to develop community-driven greening and gardening projects on vacant land. Participants will work alongside UTC to support their greening and community gardening efforts. In reflection, participants will unpack the complexities surrounding food insecurity, economic disparities and marginalization. (19 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spots Available

Estimated Fee: $450

Site Leaders: Emily Mongold and Hannah Etman

Exploring Beyond “Thank You for your Service”: Valuing the Lives and Stories of American Veterans 

American Legion Post 3

Salem, VA

This program will work to support the veteran community in a rural town in southern Virginia. A portion of the program will be spent working side by side with the veterans at Post 3 of the American Legion, performing handiwork and renovations to support the needs of the community. A portion of the week may also be spent working with the Veteran Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) performing maintenance around the facility and promoting the Veteran Health Information Exchange program that made it faster and easier for veterans to receive their care. Participants will reflect on the difficulties veterans face on return from service including healthcare access, financial security, and other social justice issues. (19 participants)

Returning Site|Open Spots Available

Estimated Fee: $545

Site Leaders: Chris Pfeifer and Katie Sherman

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Breaking Down Borders: Supporting the Refugee and Asylum Seeker Experience in the US

BCCC Youth Refugee Project | Asylee Women Enterprises

Baltimore, MD

This experience is a collection of partners in the Baltimore community centered around refugee rights and youth development. The first community partner is the Baltimore City Community College (BCCC) Refugee Youth Project, which provides mentoring and tutoring to newly-arrived refugee students from over 17 countries. The other community partner is Asylee Women Enterprises (AWE), an organization that provides transitional housing and community to women seeking asylum. Participants will serve with the BCCC RYP afterschool program as educational tutors, and work with AWE to perform maintenance and facility work including painting, processing clothing donations and gardening. These experiences and discussions around them will work to improve participants’ understanding of the issues faced by refugees and asylum seekers in the United States. (12 participants

Returning Site

Estimated Fee: $350|CLOSED

Site Leaders: Marissa Del Vecchio and Shaista Macan-Markar

Deconstructing Systems: Housing Insecurity in Susquehanna

Habitat for Humanity

Susquehanna, MD

Habitat for Humanity aims to provide decent, affordable housing for families and to support sustainable and transformative development. Habitat strives to build homes and communities and to promote the dignity and agency of homeowners. Homeowners build their own homes alongside volunteers and receive an affordable mortgage. Participants will assist in the construction of homes in the area around Susquehanna, MD. They will perform hard skills tasks to build more affordable housing for individuals and families experiencing economic inequality. Participants will discuss and reflect on the systems and policies that contribute to housing insecurity and economic disparities. (12 participants)

Returning Site|CLOSED

Estimated Program Fee: $430

Site Leaders: Derek Alford and Lauren DuPlessis

Unpacking Complexities: The Juvenile Justice System through the Voices of Incarcerated Teens

SC Department of Juvenile Justice

Columbia, SC

South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) aims to empower teens in the juvenile justice system through prevention, community programs, education, and rehabilitative services. SCDJJ strives for the development and support of youth to avoid recidivism. SCDJJ provides volunteers the opportunity to visit multiple local facilities to develop a better understanding of the juvenile justice system and create connections with the youth impacted by it. Participants will work at SCDJJ’s accredited school tutoring center and participate in recreational opportunities with the teens. Participants will also examine and discuss juvenile and broader justice systems, shifts from mass incarceration towards restorative justice, and systems that affect youth in local communities. (12 participants)

Returning Site

Estimated Fee: $375|CLOSED

Site Leaders: Chor In Lam and Kara Anderson

Soaring and Learning Together: Impact for Equitable Education and Resource Disparities

WINGS for Kids and Lowcountry Food Bank

Charleston, SC

WINGS for Kids is an after-school program in Charleston, SC that strives to foster academic success, social and emotional learning, and a positive and a healthy lifestyle for under-resourced kids. WINGS for Kids aims to help kids “soar” through learning to equip under-served kids with the skills they need to succeed in school, stay in school, and thrive in life. Participants will be directly serving alongside a WINGS Leader and serving as mentors to students in grades K-5. Half of each day will be spent working with the Lowcountry Food Bank to package goods and provide food to the surrounding communities. Meanwhile, participants will learn about the social justice issues around resource disparities and equitable education. (19 participants)

Returning Site

Estimated Fee: $360|CLOSED

Site Leaders: Abby Palmer and Claire Fitzpatrick

Deconstructing Systems: Housing Insecurity in Forsyth County

Habitat for Humanity

Winston-Salem, NC

Habitat for Humanity aims to provide decent, affordable housing for families and to support sustainable and transformative development. Habitat strives to build homes and communities and to promote the dignity and agency of homeowners. Homeowners build their own homes alongside volunteers and receive an affordable mortgage. Participants will assist in the construction of homes in the area of Winston-Salem, NC. They will perform hard skills tasks to build more affordable housing for individuals and families experiencing economic inequality. Participants will discuss and reflect on the systems and policies that contribute to housing insecurity and economic disparities. (24 participants)

New Program|CLOSED

Estimated Program Fee: $550

Site Leaders: Abby Addvensky, Ananya Garg, Ezra Rudinoff, and Leah Sandford 

Reframing the Narrative: Autism Acceptance and Neurodiversity

Camp Royall

Moncure, NC

Camp Royall is a year-round camp built to meet the needs of individuals with autism. Camp Royall provides overnight, recreational camp experiences to members of the autistic community in a safe, loving environment that accepts and celebrates each individual. While at camp, participants will serve as Activity Directors working closely with the staff to help organize fun and accessible events from music and motion to themed evening activities.  Participants will serve as counselors or activity leaders to campers, accompanying and supporting them in activities throughout each day. The camp experience will teach participants about ableism, neurodiversity, and the disability justice movement. (19 participants)

Returning Site|CLOSED

Estimated Program Fee: $370

Site Leaders: Julianna Danese and Samara Kalmus

Reading Between the Lines: Literacy and Racial Injustice

Reading Partners

Baltimore, MD

Reading Partners mobilizes communities to provide students with the proven, individualized reading support they need to read at grade level by fourth grade. Reading Partners recognizes that literacy is a foundation for all future learning, and the ability to read transforms lives and empowers children and communities to reach their full potential. Participants will tutor multiple students each day in order to help children learn and improve their reading skills, while visiting various schools in the Baltimore area. The group will reflect on the intersections between racial injustice and educational inequalities, to further understand how systemic inequities may inhibit children’s success. (19 participants)

Returning Site|CLOSED

Estimated Fee: $345

Site Leaders: Gillian Williams and Liv Bowman

Digging Deeper: Conserving Roots of the Cumberland Trail through Environmental Stewardship

Cumberland Trails Conference

Dayton, TN

The Cumberland Trails Conference (CTC) is an independent non-profit organization that works to build, acquire funding for, and promote the Cumberland Trail.  In addition to hiking, the Cumberland Trail helps to preserve the historical and cultural heritage of Tennessee, conserve natural resources, provide educational and recreational opportunities, and connect local communities. Participants on this program will help in the development and maintenance of trails and engage in education about the environment, history, geology, flora and fauna along the Cumberland Trail. Throughout the program, the participants will discuss sustainable environmental stewardship and environmental justice. (19 participants)

Returning Site|CLOSED

Estimated Fee: $565

Site Leaders: Danielle Fisher and Mark Switliski

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Winter 2020 Programs

Reframing the Narrative: Autism Acceptance and Neurodiversity

Camp Royall

Moncure, NC

Thursday, December 26th-Thursday, January. 2nd, 2020

Camp Royall is a year-round camp built to meet the needs of individuals with autism. Camp Royall provides overnight, recreational camp experiences to members of the autistic community in a safe, loving environment that accepts and celebrates each individual. While at camp, participants will serve as Activity Directors working closely with the staff to help organize fun and accessible events from music and motion to themed evening activities.  Participants will serve as counselors or activity leaders to campers, accompanying and supporting them in activities throughout each day. The camp experience will teach participants about ableism, neurodiversity, and the disability justice movement. (19 participants)

Returning Site

Estimated Program Fee: $405

Site Leaders: Jessica Casino and Jordan Tauber

Deconstructing Systems: Housing Insecurity in Durham

Habitat for Humanity

Durham, NC

Sunday, January 5th – Sunday, January 12th, 2020

Habitat for Humanity aims to provide decent, affordable housing for families and to support sustainable and transformative development. Habitat strives to build homes and communities and to promote the dignity and agency of homeowners. Homeowners build their own homes alongside volunteers and receive an affordable mortgage. Participants will assist in the construction of homes in the area around Durham, NC. They will perform hard skills tasks to build more affordable housing for individuals and families experiencing economic inequality. Participants will discuss and reflect on the systems that contribute to housing insecurity and economic disparities. (12 participants)

Returning Site

Estimated Program Fee: $495

Site Leaders: Jake Pergolizzi and Katie Burgess

Reading Between the Lines: Literacy and Racial Injustice

Reading Partners

Baltimore, MD

Saturday, January 11th – Saturday, January 18th, 2020

Reading Partners mobilizes communities to provide students with the proven, individualized reading support they need to read at grade level by fourth grade. Reading Partners recognizes that literacy is a foundation for all future learning, and the ability to read transforms lives and empowers children and communities to reach their full potential. At various schools in the Baltimore area, participants will tutor multiple students each day in order to help children learn and improve their reading skills. The group will reflect on the intersections between racial injustice and educational inequalities, to further understand how that intersection may inhibit children’s success. (19 participants)

Returning Site

Estimated Fee: $375

Site Leaders: Jenna Pluchino and Juliana Carton

Food is Medicine: Nutritional Access and Serious Illness

MANNA

Philadelphia, PA

Saturday, January 11th – Saturday, January 18th, 2020

MANNA uses nutrition to improve health for people with serious illnesses who need nourishment to heal. By providing medically tailored meals and nutrition education, they empower people to improve their health and quality of life. MANNA serves people who are at acute nutritional risk due to serious illness. They believe that food is medicine, and that nutrition plays a key role in  recovery. Participants will be working in the kitchen at MANNA where they will prepare and package meals to be delivered to the community. They will reflect upon nutritional access, health and building interdependent communities. (12 participants)

New Program!

Estimated Fee: $430

Site Leaders: Lia Magliola and Patricia Dunkak