The Magical Timeline of Spring Trip 2014:
August 2013: Habitat Lafayette personally emailed Columbia and asked us back before opening up applications to general applications for spring break work, telling us that we were “one of the most memorable Collegiate Challenges in the Affiliate’s history.” OBVIOUSLY we said yes.
November 2013: Julia submits an application to Columbia’s Alternative Break Program, which reviews student applications for service projects outside of New York (domestic and abroad), offers them Columbia funding, and trains them in workshops about project sustainability, culture adaptability, curriculum development, team dynamics. We love ABP because of their philosophy of “engaged scholarship”, which encourages civic engagement instead of “community service” and emphasizes need-based, solution-based work, mutuality with host communities, and sustainability: all stuff we vehemently believe in at Habitat!
- Columbia Habitat’s second spring break trip to Lafayette, Louisiana is ACCEPTED by ABP and offered a niiiiiice Columbia grant!
- On the night the application went live, our trip received over 15 applications within the first 40 minutes. We could only accept the first seven (other than Boss Woman Julia), but we were thrilled at the interest! Check out our “About the Students” page to see the tributes who joined the trip!
February 2014-early March 2014:
The team starts its Learn Lafayette presentation series! Each Thursday night trip team meeting, a pair of team members presented about topics relevant to our work, including: the history and work of Habitat for Humanity International, the events and aftermath of the housing crisis in 2008, Hurricane Katrina’s impact on Lafayette and the problems of relief work, Hurricane Sandy and its impact on NYC, Lafayette culture and history, the history and work of Lafayette Habitat, and the information we know about the three families for whom we’ll be building! Check out the photo gallery below to get a peek at our meetings:
15 March 2014:
- Departure from LaGuardia at 5:30am!
- Arrive at our Habitat-provided house, settle in, make our first communal dinner.
16 March 2014: Day trip to New Orleans
- Visit to the Hurricane Katrina Memorial and other famous NOLA sites
- I don’t think they’re ready for the beignets
17 March 2014: First day on the build site
18 March 2014: Build site
19 March 2014: Build site
20 March 2014: Build site and at night, a Habitat-sponsored dinner overlooking the bayou where we get to eat crawfish and get to know the future homeowners even better off the site!
21 March 2014: Build site
- Visit to Vermilionville, a museum of Acadian culture on acres of beautiful land!
- Depart Lafayette for NYC