New Orleans Service Trip Office of Community Service Wakehurst 202 firstname.lastname@example.org (401) 341-2440
What are the Dates of the Trip? January 7 to January 14, 2012
WHAT’S THE NEED? After Hurricane Katrina:
100% of the homes in St. Bernard Parish were rendered uninhabitable.
St. Bernard Parish had standing water of 4 to 20 feet for up to 4 weeks
Homes, clothes, furniture, pictures, keepsakes, cars and tools were destroyed.
A little over half the population has returned. Tens of thousands of families in the Greater New Orleans area still can’t afford housing and have to compromise with expensive substandard living conditions.
Where do we Work? We’ll be working with the St. Bernard Project. The ST. BERNARD PROJECT (SBP) is a nonprofit rebuilding organization in New Orleans, LA, dedicated to rebuilding the homes and lives of Hurricane Katrina survivors.
The St. Bernard Project’s programs are designed to address the physical, emotional, and psychological devastation caused by the storm.
The St. Bernard Project’s Rebuilding Program rebuilds homes for senior citizens, people with disabilities and families with children who cannot afford to have their homes rebuilt by contractors. For clients who can afford supplies, the St. Bernard Project provides supervised volunteer labor. For clients who cannot afford supplies, the St. Bernard Project buys the supplies and provides the labor.
Rebuilding a Family’s Home Could Include:
Door and Window Installation
Taping, Mudding, Sanding, Painting
Where do we Stay?
Annunciation Mission. Annunciation Mission is a Christian, inter-denominational ministry dedicated to transforming and rebuilding lives in New Orleans by welcoming out-of-town volunteers to stay, eat, work and pray with us.
What’s on the Menu? Time to Eat: Breakfast: Hot breakfast, including eggs, sausage, biscuits, hot and cold cereals, fresh fruit, and an assortment of beverages Lunch: Volunteers pack their sandwich lunches in the morning and take them to their work sites. Dinner: Monday – Red Beans & Rice Tuesday – Italian Wednesday – Hotdogs and Nachos Thursday – Creole Jambalaya Friday – Gumbo
Who Can Participate? ANY undergraduate student is eligible.
What Does it Cost? The trip typically costs about $500.00 per person, and it includes most meals, flight, transportation, housing, and work site coordination.
How Do I Apply? Applications are available online at www.salve.edu/life/communityService/serviceTrips.aspx Applications are due to the Office of Community Service (Wakehurst 202) by noon, on Friday, Sept. 23. All applicants must sign up for an interview time. Decisions will be announced Sept. 28.
If I’m Accepted, Then What?
Accepted students will be expected to attend mandatory pre-trip meetings, assist with fundraising efforts, and submit all required paperwork and payments on time.
Pre-trip meeting dates are TBD.
Things to Know Before You Go Be flexible! Where will I be working? What will I be doing? What time should I arrive? These are all important questions, but please be patient and understanding when waiting for responses. Situations change on a daily and sometimes hourly basis, so come with an open mind and a flexible attitude.
Things to Know Before You Go
There is plenty to do, but sometimes it takes a while to determine where you will be sent. Some tasks are more fun than others, but every day of work puts a family that much closer to moving in.
Remember that although we are not a construction company, we are working on construction projects and sometimes unforeseen issues come up at a house that we’re working on.
Things to Know Before You Go Work Carefully: You’re working on someone’s house, so please be as careful as possible when performing a task. Follow the guidelines that the site supervisor gives you. We can fix most mistakes but this will mean a delay in the project which translates into a family waiting even longer to be able to move into their home.
Things to Know Before You Go Safety: Please be careful on the job site. Power tools are awesome but can do serious damage to fingers and limbs. - If you have asthma, bring your inhaler. If you have chronic joint pain, don’t volunteer for work that will aggravate it.
Be careful climbing ladders and benches, and lifting sheetrock – just use common sense!
Things to Know Before You Go Sensitivity: Please be sensitive when communicating with families. Don’t make ANY promises. Don’t tell them you’re going to finish their house. Don’t tell them you’ll be back tomorrow if you’re not sure you can keep that promise. Be a good listener – sometimes our clients just want to talk; however, even if you think you know how they feel, don’t tell them that. Some people take offense to that comment. Again, use common sense.
Things to Know Before You Go Sensitivity: We ask that volunteers provide their own lunches. While our families occasionally provide lunch, not all families are financially able to feed all individuals and groups. Come prepared and please do not ask homeowners for food. On the other hand, if homeowners do prepare food, please accept graciously, this is their way of thanking you for all your hard work!
Things to Know Before You Go
Respect the house you’re working on. This is someone’s home and they come in frequently to check on progress. Please do not draw or write inappropriate things on the drywall. And please, please do not use pen to write on the sheetrock-it will show up later. A note to smokers: please do not smoke in the houses and clean up cigarette butts.
Remember… Leave the negative attitudes at home because…. The work WILL be hard. It’s your winter break and you have to get up early. The weather changes. It may be hot or cold, so be prepared. You chose to go on the trip. This is NOT a vacation. The chaperones volunteered to go on the trip. Your goal is to bring happiness to NOLA. It might be a long travel day there and back. Sometimes you get lost….remember Hurricane Katrina washed away streets.
“Immerse yourself in NOLA and take every second to learn something new and don’t be afraid to build/rebuild homes and new friendships.”
Information adapted from the St. Bernard Project “Volunteer Arrival Packet”