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Fifty-eight UNC undergraduates will dedicate their spring break to address pressing social concerns including urban poverty, civil rights, disaster relief, and Latino and Native American issues.

The students will travel to Atlanta; Birmingham, Ala.; Pembroke, Newton Grove, as well as Hyde and Dare counties in North Carolina to work with community organizations as part of the APPLES Service-Learning Alternative Breaks program at the Carolina Center for Public Service.

From March 3 to 11, students will work with nonprofit and government agencies addressing issues important to the local communities through direct service and advocacy work. The students will apply what they have learned during the alternative break spring (ASB) course, readings and recitations. Using skills gained during training with El Futuro in Durham, Latino issues break participants will conduct workshops on mental health and substance abuse with Clinton middle and high school students. After touring the United Methodist Disaster Recovery Team facilities in Hyde County, Disaster Relief ASB students will prepare dinner for long-term volunteers serving in the area. Students will also participate in commercial and residential demolition and rebuilding efforts in Hyde and Dare counties

All alternative spring break participants will document their service work and learning through photos and personal reflections. After returning to UNC, they will continue their service so the Chapel Hill community can benefit from what they learned during break.

Since 1999 undergraduate students have learned about and served communities through the APPLES alternative breaks. Developing lasting relationships with communities in North Carolina, the Southeast and the Mid-Atlantic, students have gained valuable experiences working with their peers in the areas of health, environmental justice and more. This academic year, 153 students will give approximately 6,800 service hours during APPLES alternative break experiences.

Learn more about APPLES alternative breaks.

Published February 27, 2012.