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The University of Alabama

UA Students Head Out to Serve Communities for Alternative Breaks

Note: For contact information for the domestic teams during spring break, contact Richard LeComte, media relations, at or 205/394-3040.

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The University of Alabama’s Center for Service and Leadership is sending five teams of more than 100 UA students, as well as leaders, on “Beyond Bama: Alternative Break” from Saturday, March 12, to Sunday, March 20.

Teams will go on international trips to Managua, Nicaragua; and La Florida, Peru. Domestic trips are to Orlando, Florida; Guin and New Orleans.

“Alternative Breaks are cornerstone programs in the CSL,” said Courtney Chapman Thomas, director of UA’s Center for Service and Leadership.

“These breaks allow students the opportunity to become more aware of social issues in the world around them while teaching them to think critically and serve compassionately,” Thomas said. “This helps develop and inspire their leadership philosophy while helping create empowered communities around the world.”

The team traveling to Managua will work with Panorama Service Expeditions: Nicaragua Compact on developing a community school. This initiative sends U.S. university students to help with the long-term development of Nicaragua through social-justice-based direct service projects.

Panorama Service Expeditions, a nonprofit organization focused on developing grassroots sustainable social and economic development projects, and Break Away, the national nonprofit for alternative breaks, are committed to long-term sustainability and service in Nicaraguan communities.

The team traveling to Peru will be working with the Fuller Foundation. Peru Fuller Center is working in the migrant community of La Florida. The local Fuller Center is building homes, planting trees and empowering the local communities.

The team traveling to New Orleans will be serving at His Hands to Go New Orleans. This organization focuses on enriching its community through neighborhood restoration efforts and creation care.

The team going to Guin will be serving with Habitat for Humanity as a part of the SEC Alternative Break Domestic Compact. Teams are partnered with local Habitat chapters and will be serving alongside community members.

The Orlando team will be traveling to Give Kids the World. Give Kids the World is a nonprofit group that provides weeklong, cost-free vacations to children with life-threatening illnesses.

UA observes Spring Break from Friday, March 11, to Sunday, March 20. The community can get involved by helping donate school supplies, books, and children’s clothing and shoes. These donation items can be dropped off at 1100 Ferguson Center or pick up can be arranged by the center.

For more information about the Center’s Beyond Bama: Alternative Break program, go to or phone Thomas at 205/348-2865.

The University of Alabama, a student-centered research university, is experiencing significant growth in both enrollment and academic quality. This growth, which is positively impacting the campus and the state's economy, is in keeping with UA's vision to be the university of choice for the best and brightest students. UA, the state's flagship university, is an academic community united in its commitment to enhancing the quality of life for all Alabamians.