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Georgia Southern Alternative Breaks Program celebrating 15 years of issue-focused service

Since 2006, students at Georgia Southern University have been going on weeklong, immersive, issue-focused service experiences known as alternative breaks. Throughout the Alternative Breaks Program’s 15 years, participants like student Caleb Parker have helped communities overcome challenges while bettering themselves in the process.  

Caleb Parker

Parker has taken part in two Alternative Break trips during his time at Georgia Southern, focusing on urban farming in Asheville, North Carolina, and Lynchburg, Virginia. He said working in greenhouses and orchards allowed him to connect with fellow students while helping other people.

“I met new friends while also learning about a new community, social justice and sustainability, and how to apply both in my life, while completing incredibly rewarding service,” Parker said. “You’ll learn things from the Alternative Breaks Program that will change your whole outlook on life and make some great memories.”

The Alternative Breaks Program has served 93 different communities through 192 trips in the past 15 years. During the unprecedented times of COVID-19 pandemic, the program adapted to make a global impact through stay breaks. 

Stay breaks are offered throughout the Statesboro and Savannah communities, and they implement meaningful service, while ensuring the safety of student participants and those they are serving.

“The best part of the Alternative Breaks Program is opening up to a wealth of new perspectives,” Parker said. “You’ll witness so many new ideas from the nonprofits we work with, the people in the communities we serve and even your fellow breakers.”

The Office of Leadership and Community Engagement is celebrating the 15-year milestone with a socially distanced event in the IT Building on the Statesboro Campus on March 4 from 1 to 3 p.m. There will be no-touch activities, snacks and storytelling from past service trips.

For more information about the Alternative Breaks Program and the celebration, visit GeorgiaSouthern.edu/LeadServe/AlternativeBreaks.

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