Austin Peay students volunteer during winter break
(Posted Jan. 25, 2019)
Over winter break, two groups of Austin Peay State University students set off for a week of travel, volunteer work and fun, all participating in the APSU Center for Service-Learning & Community Engagement’s Alternative Break Trips.
One group went to New Orleans, Louisiana, and worked with the Audubon Nature Institute, which includes a zoo, aquarium, nature center and more. The group spent the week planting more than 200 trees, elevating flooded hiking trails and beautifying animal enclosures.
“Helping out the zoo with their needed work felt very fulfilling because they were really low staffed, and I could tell they really appreciated all of our help,” Haley Palmeri, the New Orleans trip student leader, said. “But my favorite part of the whole trip was being able to feed carrots to the giraffes!”
The second group traveled to Houston, Texas, and worked with SPB, a hurricane relief organization, as well as A Place for Peanut, a horse sanctuary. The group cleaned up the site of a house that was damaged by Hurricane Harvey. The work included demolition as well as working with drywall. At the horse sanctuary, the group assisted in rebuilding a fence and paddock.
“Doing something of service for another is a real healthy reset,” Sean Siple, a student on the Houston trip, said. “It brings gratitude, perspective and self-worth.”
Students interested in an alternative break trip should contact the Center of Service-Learning & Community Engagement at APSU. After completing a written application, students are selected to participate in a variety of service projects throughout the country that are organized by student leaders and faculty/staff advisors.
For information, visit www.apsu.edu/volunteer.