Spring Southern Service Tour taking place during Spring Break

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The Office of Community Engagement is hosting its own Spring Southern Service Tour during Spring Break this semester.

Students participating will be going to Memphis, Tennessee, Little Rock, Arkansas and Shreveport, Louisiana to help and serve the communities.

Trips like these are offered at least once every school year.

Last year, the Office of Community Engagement sent students to help with hurricane relief in Houston. In years prior, students have gone to various places around the country and Mexico.

Erin Wilson, associate director for the Office of Community Engagement, said spots are still open for students.

“We are only planning to take 12 to 15 students for this trip,” Wilson said. “If popularity continues to grow then we will expand and create larger trips or multiple trips in the future.”

Wilson said that students who are interested and passionate about service can find space to be added into the trip.

The students and faculty will be using a charter bus to move from city to city.

Students will be focused on Youth Services while in Little Rock.

“In Little Rock, students will get to share about their college experience and help facilitate a college prep session for local high school students at Pulaski County Youth Services,” Wilson said.

In Memphis, the students will learn more about homelessness and hunger insecurity.

“We will be working with Urban Bicycle Food Ministry, a local nonprofit, to learn more about hunger insecurity and homelessness,” Wilson said. “We will then be biking around downtown Memphis delivering burritos to homeless community members.”

Students will serve at Community Renewal in Shreveport. Community Renewal is a local nonprofit created by a TCU alumnus Mack McCarter.

“It connects neighbors and residents to restore the foundation of safe and caring communities,” Wilson said. “There, students will get to meet McCarter and volunteer doing some tasks to help the organization be better prepared to serve their clientele base.”

Westen Riley, a former philanthropy chair for TCU’s Interfraternity Council (IFC), encouraged students to attend.

“What I can say is that my experience with both community service and philanthropy has really made me grow, so I definitely recommend activities like these to anyone interested,” Riley said.

Wilson and Ryker Thompson, her coordinator, will be accompanying the students. The dates of the trip are Tuesday, March 12 to Friday, March 15. All students are welcome to attend.

The program fee is $300 and a non-refundable deposit of $50 is due by Feb. 22. The remaining balance is due by Monday, March 11.

Wilson said the program fee includes transportation to all three cities, lodging, most meals and all service-related materials. Two meetings will be held prior to the trip and will be required for all participants.

The application can be found on Engage under Office for Community Engagement forms.