NewsPress Release - 2/28/2000
MARLBORO, VT - While most college students will spend Spring
Break somewhere on the beach working on their tans, a group of Marlboro
College students will spend their Spring Break catching rays while
they help build houses for low-income families. From March 19 to
26, at least seven Marlboro students will participate in a coastal
South Carolina Habitat for Humanity program.
Last spring, a group of Marlboro students spent their Spring Break performing two weeks of community service in Costa Rica. Immediately upon their return, the students expressed a strong interest in again spending their vacation helping the needy. Student Activities Director Carrie Weikel suggested that the Habitat for Humanity program offered the perfect opportunity for them, pointing out that the remote South Carolina islands also offer a chance to introduce Marlboro students to the lesser-known Gullah culture.
Leaving the small campus in the hills of southern Vermont on March 16, the ensemble - including undergraduates Malia Tanji, Lotte Schlegel, Rose Anna Harrison, Andrew Sandlin, Dave Hoffman, Sean Smith, and Carrie Sterr -- will travel south with Weikel, spending three days camping along the East Coast, ending up in Mt. Pleasant, a Gullah community just outside of Charleston, South Carolina. Although headquartered in Mt. Pleasant, the projects will take place primarily on South Carolina's coastal islands.
Weikel herself has been active with Habitat for Humanity for seven years. Her work has led her to Omaha, Rapid City, and Virginia. She proposed coastal South Carolina because of the unique cultural heritage of the area. "Gullah is our country's only Creole culture and language center left," Weikel said. "This trip could provide some interesting cultural interactions."
Habitat for Humanity International, which has built more than 80,000 houses internationally, was founded by Millard and Linda Fuller in 1976. The organization describes itself as a "nonprofit, ecumenical Christian housing ministry that seeks to eliminate poverty housing and homelessness from the world, and to make decent shelter a matter of conscience and action." Building projects are financed by outside donations, the homeowner's house payments, and no-interest loans provided by various Habitat supporters. Habitat invites people of all backgrounds, races, and religions to build houses together in partnership with families in need.
For more information about Marlboro College's Spring Break trip to South Carolina, contact Carrie Weikel in Marlboro's Student Activities Office at (802) 258-9248 or firstname.lastname@example.org.