First, I want to thank each of you so much for donating to the Alternative Spring Break program. Your donation means so much to our staff, students, and the community that these funds have and will help to serve! I apologize for an update that was sent this morning about us departing for our trip, as we actually returned from both trips on Friday of last week. Both the St. Louis and Gatlinburg trips went very well and our students did such an amazing job serving these separate communities!
As a part of the St. Louis trip, twelve students immersed themselves into the North City of St. Louis, MO serving and learning with a local non-profit, Mission: St. Louis. They learned about the racial, social, and economic injustices plaguing the area while supporting the North City by weatherizing and painting wheelchair ramps for the elderly population. As a part of the Gatlinburg trip, thirteen students travelled to Gatlinburg, TN to help restore the Smoky Mountain community from the devastating wild fires that struck the community in December of 2016. Working alongside AmeriCorps members and other volunteers, students directly served by assisting in donation centers and by cleaning up home debris from local rivers and streams, as well as remove existing debris and burned trees from mountain sides. They learned firsthand the devastation that struck the community by interacting with local firefighters and victims of the fires.
By the end of the week, these students dedicated a combined total of 552 hours of community service equaling $13,005.12 in economic impact for Gatlinburg and St. Louis. During each trip participating students blogged about their amazing experiences. If you're interested in reading more, please visit www.slimemphis.wordpress.com
Thank you so much again for supporting our students, the University of Memphis, and communities in need across the country!
Go Tigers Go!