COLUMBIA — Seventeen students and three staff members from Columbia College are preparing to spend eight days over spring break completing a service project in Appalachia.
The volunteers will help the residents of Chavies, Ky., repair homes that aren’t considered livable, making them warmer, drier and safer, according to Elizabeth Ball, director of student activities and leadership development at the college.
Kimberly Craig, a junior majoring in human services at Columbia College, said she wanted to do something that really mattered during spring break this year.
"I love meeting people that are from different places and backgrounds. I wanted to make a difference," Craig said. "I'm a human services major, and helping people seems to be at the very core of who I am."
Students leave March 26 and return April 2, driving both ways.
"We'll learn about the poverty, art and culture of Appalachia," Ball said. "We'll interact with the families we are paired with on a daily basis."
Prior to the departure, the participants had orientation meetings. They learned about safe tool usage and attended meetings about preparations for the trip.
"I've brushed up on my carpentry and painting skills a bit, and I've started buying the supplies I'll need for the trip," Craig said. "I just need to pack it all."