Students to immerse in international service projects during Mardi Gras break

Thu, 01/28/2010 (All day)

Jan. 28, 2010

MOBILE, Ala. – During Mardi Gras break, 40 students will serve communities in Central America as part of the International Service Immersion Program.

Four groups of 7-13 students, along with faculty and staff advisors, will travel the week of Feb. 14 to Belize City and Punta Gorda, Belize; Managua, Nicaragua; and San Salvador, El Salvador.

In Belize City and Managua, the groups will be working with Hand in Hand Ministries, a faith-based international service organization that provides life’s essentials to the poorest of the poor.

In Punta Gorda, the group will work through St. Peter Claver, a Jesuit parish and school that provides religious and educational services to 19 Maya and Garifuna villages nearby.

In San Salvador, the group will work with CRISPAZ (Christians for Peace in El Salvador), a faith-based organization that provides immersion participants the opportunity to experience the insights, struggles, needs and hope of the Salvadoran people.

While the actual service trips last one week, the International Service Immersion Program consists of eight months of formation. Students wishing to participate in the program must demonstrate a genuine desire to lead, serve and grow in their faith. Once selected, the students attend weekly group meetings that promote teamwork and build community. Fundraising is an important team-building initiative, because the students raise the majority of needed funds as a group. Through weekly community meetings, the students also learn about the people, religion, culture and socio-economic situations of their destination countries.

Spring Hill College will be closed for Mardi Gras break Feb. 15-16.