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Archive for February, 2011

Mar’Tina’s: Introduction & Monday Update…

Hello everyone. My name is Mar’Tina Hampton and I’m from Virginia Beach, VA. I am a sophomore  at Christopher Newport University, (CNU). My reasons for going on this trip is because I have a big heart to help those in need and it just  saddens me to know that the poverty rate is increasing each day, reaching now 37 million (including men, women, and children).

My hopes while on this trip is to learn more about poverty and to really be thankful for all that I do have because some are in far worst situations then I’m in. Also, I hope while on this trip I can gain more knowledge about the needs of the less fortunate and what I can do back in my own community, so that when time is right I can begin a nonprofit organization for the less fortunate. My fears while on this trip is that I will put myself in the shoes of the less fortunate and get too emotional (because I’m very sensitive) just from seeing and hearing what they go through. My goal is to just build a relationship with the homeless or less fortunate and bring a smile to their faces to relieve them of some of the confusion and frustration they may encounter throughout their day.

Monday: This morning we went to serve meals to the less fortunate at “Our Daily Bread.” It was an exciting, sad, and yet funny experience. Laughing and joking with the employees, volunteers and the less fortunate made my day. I can say that a goal and hope of mines was achieved today and I hope that as I continue to serve on this trip eachday a goal and hope is accomplished. Later tonight we are going to be painting at Christopher Place Employment Academy, I know that will leave another great impact on our lives.  Be on the lookout throughout the week for more exciting blogs from the group.

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi

-Mar’Tina


Sunday: Summary/Welcome

Hello to all the moms, dads, friends, family members, coworkers, students and … other wonderful people,

Let me formally introduce myself, my name is Kelsey Church Brunton from a small town in Rockingham County, VA where there are probably more chickens, turkeys, and cows than there are people.  I work for Christopher Newport University (my alma mater) as a University Fellow.  One of the worst parts of my job is facilitating this trip with my copilot Anita (she is the avid blogger and I was completely kidding about this being the worst part of my job).

The Trip: 9 students of all grades and majors from CNU with a desire to serve are dedicating their spring break to helping people suffering from poverty and hunger in Baltimore, MD with Catholic Charities.  The students will be introducing themselves and sharing their experiences, as Ebony and Spenser already have, as the week goes on.

REACH Out (Raising Educational Awareness through Compassion and Humanity, for those of you who are new to the blog and the program): A student organization whose goal is to develop relationships and gain a better understanding of the people and community around us through engaged service.  This is deep stuff here, we have come to Baltimore to do more than just make box lunches and drop them off (while that still is an honorable thing to do).   REACH Out is an organization at CNU that filled a void for students of any age, major, or religious belief, who wanted to give their time in the name of service, simply service with no strings attached.

Tonight we had our first of many reflections.  We asked everyone to share their hopes, fears, and goals for the trip.  I hope that they will continue to share and connect with each other, the people we meet throughout the week, and with you all because I was really inspired by the truth and heart that transpired.

My fears for the week are many, being one of the “moms”  of the trip, I worry that one of the students will be kidnapped and ransomed for all the money that CNU has invested in the new science building.  I fear that there will be a traffic report in my name… “there is a 2 mile back up behind a slow moving white passenger van in the city of Baltimore.”  I fear that I will lock the keys in the car, that I will drive off without one of the students, that I will ruin all of dinner, or that I will lose my laminated/color coded itinerary.  But more importantly are my hopes, I hope that I will be helpful and have the courage to learn and embrace the intimidating homeless peoples.

It has always been on my bucket list as Jack Nicholson would say, the buried life list as my brother, Cole, would say, or my life list as my coworker, Kimberly, would say, to serve in a soup kitchen and tomorrow I will be able to check that off my list!  Big day!  But my challenge/goal for the group was to have an experience this week that will move them to serve after this week, when they are not being bused to and from service sites.  I hope that this will be an experience that will start a lifetime of consciousness for others and a constant reminder to give your time to deserving people.

These students have been absolutely wonderful and I can’t wait to work along side of them!

Sunday: Our Day In Baltimore!

DOLPHIN SHOW!

I am Spenser Fleming and I am kind of the photographer for this week, so I will be posting more pictures throughout the week. This first picture is from the Dolphin Show we had the opportunity to see today at the Baltimore Aquarium.

We were able to sleep in today and a few of us even attended Mass. Upon the conclusion of Mass we hopped into the van and headed for the Aquarium. A majority of us had never been before and we were all excited to explore the underwater world. We grabbed some lunch before heading into the Aquarium where we headed straight for the Dolphin Show. The show was awesome! The dolphins displayed their prowess and elegance in the water, jumping twenty feet in the air or doing flips in front of the crowd. The show was non-stop and bursting with energy! A few lucky volunteers from the crowd were able to get up close and personal with the dolphins and many in the front rows were soaked by the dolphins.  After the show we headed to our 4-D movie experience, Planet Earth, and by 4-D it meant we were going to be surprised again and again. Throughout the movie we were sprayed with mist, wind, and bubbles; O and also this fiendish thing in the back of the chair that jabbs you in the back…many of us were not too fond of that application. The movie was short but we all had fun. The next two hours were spent exploring exhibition after exhibition of sealife. We conluded our trip to the Aquarium by listening to a few fudgery bakers who sung loud and to their hearts content.

Dinner time. Tonight was a Spaghetti night! Jamal, Leigh, and Ebony assisted by our leaders Anita and kelsey made the group a magnificent meal. A full salad bowl, some garlic bread, and enough spaghetti to feed a small army. After dinner we met up with the other volunteer group from Michigan state and made some new friends. We will most likely run into them again later in the week and look forward to it. That just about concludes our Sunday and what a great day it was! New posts should be up daily along with some pics from the day.

–Spenser

Hello, my name is…

My name is Ebony. I am from a small town called Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.  I wanted to go on this particular Reach Out trip for several reasons, the main one being my constant contemplation upon whether to participate in the Peace Corps before attending grad school. I am hoping this week spent in Baltimore will help provide some clarification. Tonight we discussed our hopes, fears, and personal/group goals for this week. Here are mine…

Hope: To be present in each circumstance.

Fear: …that I will not allow my emotions to show.

Goal: To not isolate and to share what I am feeling.

We’re Here!!

Hello all blog followers!

We have arrived to Baltimore safe and sound! We arrived around 6:30pm making great time!  Once we arrived we met up with Wayne, a youth pastor here at the church/parrish we are staying who showed us around and gave us an orientation. Upon this orientation, we discovered that there are apparently “ghosts” in here. We shall see what ensues with this! Keep following the blog and we will posts some pictures and our itinerary for that day!

Tomorrow, we are going to the AQUARIUM!!! Expect some pictures of that!

Until tomorrow,

The Reach Out Baltimore Team!

Tropical Smoothie Fundraiser!

Hey Everyone!!

 

Our first fundraiser will be THIS Wednesday from 4pm-8pm at Tropical Smoothie! Please comment and leave the times that you are available to hang out there to make sure people say our name at the counter! You do not need to stay the whole time, but please committ at least at hour of your time if possible!

Thanks everyone and Happy Monday 🙂

Anita

Tropical Smoothie **UPDATE**

Hi everyone,

I just contacted Tropical Smoothie for the fundraising, and I was told they could do it on Wednesday. But the catch is being that they are hosting for another organization next week, we would only be able to use them on the Wednesday before the trip on 2/23. He told me if we would like to go and use that day then we could come in and talk to him more about everything. I dont know if that’s too late of a fundraiser because that’ll be exactly 3 days before we leave. So I’m posting for input.

Thanks ❤

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