Spring Break 2014
Service and Justice Trips
Possible Community Host Partners
5 day local Omaha Trips
Omaha, NE – Siena/Francis House
Homelessness in Omaha: Getting to know our Neighbors
As with all our half-week (5 day) trips, this is definitely more of an immersion trip rather than a service trip. You are invited to experience the reality of homelessness and the care and advocacy offered right here in our own city. Live with the guests at our local community partner Siena/Francis House, which focuses on meeting basic needs and accompanying people along their recovery process. You will sleep in the shelter as the ministry of presence is the primary component of this trip. A lot of time will be spent hearing the stories of the guests there, many of whom are experiencing mental illness or addiction, in formal meetings, informal time spent in the day shelter, and during meals. This trip is the 2nd half of the week: March 12-15.
Relevant Website: Siena/Francis House, National Coalition for the Homeless,
Omaha, NE – North Omaha Community Orientation
Tues-Saturday or Monday- Friday of break. Get to know Creighton’s neighbors by hearing from a wide variety of local community members working on economic development, education or in social services. Learn about the “Street of Dreams”, North Omaha’s history as a Jazz center and the Civil Rights organizing that has happened and continues today. Visit local businesses including Big Mama’s Kitchen.
Omaha, NE – Sustainability Orientation
This five-day seminar exposes the participants to five different aspects of sustainability in Omaha: transportation, water, food, energy, and waste/recycling. Students will engage these topics through integrating hands-on experience with education by experts in the field of sustainability. Students will attempt to live sustainably during the seminar by walking, using public transportation, eating locally/seasonally/organically, reducing our use of water and energy through conservation, and creating little waste; (This may mean not eating meat). This sustainability seminar seeks to educate and engage Creighton students about these issues in order that we might begin to create a more sustainable community here at Creighton and beyond.
Full Week Trips (leaving Friday for the longer drives and Saturday for closer sites)
Albuquerque, NM – St. Martin’s Hospitality Center
Ministry of presence with homeless guests in New Mexico
Students will be interacting daily with men and women experiencing homelessness. There will be meetings with those who work on behalf of the poor. Students will spend their days talking with and spending time with shelter guests. This will help students understand poverty, injustice, and suffering in the area. St. Martin’s Hospitality Center is a day shelter that serves 250-300 clients daily. We provide showers, clothing, storage, and a hot breakfast every day. In addition we have a full range of behavioral services, case management, job development, and client advocacy. Students will have the opportunity to visit Art Street, a local studio which is open to St. Martin’s clients.
Relevant Websites: St. Martin’s Hospitality Center, National Coalition for the Homeless, US Conference of Catholic Bishops Economic Justice
Axtell, Nebraska – Mosaic Bethphage Village
Many of the over 100 persons who live at Bethphage Village in our service have multiple disabilities and therefore are some of society’s most vulnerable. Individuals live in group home settings and the feel of community is palpable. The students will have the opportunity to get to know a wide variety of personalities and backgrounds. Life is both robust and reflective in the Village. People are celebrated and compassionately cared for. Participants will have an opportunity to build relationships with those at the Village through visits, tutoring, playing with children, and the elderly. They will also engage the often hidden civil rights issues faced by those with special needs. Time at Bethphage Village will sensitize students and inspire them to offer a “voice” for those whose voice is often not heard.
Chicago, IL – Whipple House (Daughters of Charity)
Diverse communities in Chicago.
The Daughters of Charity are active in many ministries around Chicago. They will invite you to serve and learn at the agencies doing outreach to the underserved. Students will be able to see a variety of agencies. Students will travel on the bus to and from Chicago, leaving Friday evening of midterms week. Students will use public transportation while in Chicago.
Relevant Websites: Daughters of Charity, St. Vincent De Paul Center, Poverty in Chicago
Chicago, IL – White Rose Catholic Worker House
The White Rose Catholic Worker serves in a number of different communities locally, nationally, and internationally. Each day of the week volunteers take on a different issue of social concern and explore the alternatives that they are organizing for and living in the house including environmental sustainability, torture & war/nonviolence, capitalism/green economics, and poverty/hospitality. There will be a series of educational and hands on experiences for each one. The White Rose Catholic Worker also has a farm, where students will stay at during their trip, and participants will help with general farm tasks – harvesting and planting – and learn how to live in a land and craft based society.
Relevant Websites: Catholic Worker Movement
Cleveland, OH – Catholic Worker
Gentrification and Homelessness: The Cleveland Catholic Worker House offers a week-long socioeconomic immersion experience in Cleveland, in the Ohio City neighborhood. Students live as part of the Catholic Worker community, as well as part of the larger neighborhood community that is diverse economically, racially, and socially. The experience includes volunteering with many different social services in the area including meal programs and getting to know the neighborhood and understanding its socioeconomic circumstances, especially the changes brought by gentrification in recent years.
Detroit, MI – Daughters of Charity
Daughters of Charity in Farmington Hills, MI
Students will live with the Daughters of Charity religious women’s community. The Daughters of Charity have designed a week for students to work with and learn from workers and guests at a local soup kitchen and adult education center. Students may work homeless outreach to youth as well. This site has a variety of direct and indirect service. It is structured to show the poverty and outreach in Detroit, which has one of the nation’s highest poverty and unemployment levels after many automobile factories closed. The Daughters of Charity will give an orientation of the community and spend time reflecting, sharing and eating with the group.
Relevant Websites: Daughters of Charity, Detroit Poverty, US Conference of Catholic Bishops Economic Justice
Denver, CO – Colorado Vincentian Volunteers
Visit the Colorado Vincentian Volunteer (CVV) program in Denver and experience the beauty and hardships in a city below the Rockies. Do service work outside your comfort zone through work in community centers, emergency shelters, child tutoring programs, home improvement, and much more! As a participant, you will go to a variety of sites throughout the week, performing various types of service and developing relationships with some of Denver’s finest. Immerse yourself amongst the diverse but economically poor Denver community and cover topics such as homelessness, poverty, environmental issues, and more. Spend a meal eating at the SAME café, a local restaurant that functions only on goodwill donations, and experience other volunteer services offered in the Mile High City. During downtime, you can build community within your Denver trip “family” at St. Ignatius, a Jesuit Parish, and venture through the beautiful Rocky mountains. For those considering a year of volunteering after graduation, this trip is a wonderful opportunity to experience the welcoming Denver community and learn what the CVV program has to offer.
Relevant Websites: Colorado Vincentian Volunteers, US Conference of Catholic Bishops Economic Justice
East St. Louis, IL – Hubbard House
Variety of Direct Service
Sr. Marge Clifford organizes opportunities to work with outreach organizations in East St. Louis. Meet the staff and community members who are working tirelessly to improve their community. Students may work in a soup kitchen, thrift store or in school based setting. The students will stay at Hubbard House, whose mission is to “serve those who serve” by providing housing and meals as needed for area volunteers. Hubbard House provides a forum for discussing why there is poverty, why people continue to be poorer and why the “system” does not support the needs of the poor. There is a large focus on education and how it affects the cycle of poverty. Incorporated within this process are opportunities for advocacy and discussing systemic change, for example: What can you do about it?
Hubbard House, Information about Joe Hubbard and Founding of Hubbard House, US Conference of Catholic Bishops Economic Justice
El Paso, TX – Columban Border Immersion
The Missionary Society of St. Columban’s Office of Advocacy and Outreach will host this border immersion. Hearing peoples’ stories and accompanying them will be the focus of this trip. You will talk with community members about the pressures, challenges and joys of living and working along the border; additionally, learning about the violence in Juarez and the challenges of immigration, migration, land rights, economics, and sustainability. Students will stay at the Columban Mission Center, which has been refurbished in a sustainable way. Hands on service will be extremely limited but may include a day working on a community garden in the area. Although you will not be crossing the border, you are required to have a valid United States ID and a passport with you.
Relevant Websites: Columban Advocacy & Outreach, Justice for Immigrants,Video about Lomas del Poleo Land Dispute,
Minneapolis, MN – Visitation Monastery
“Ubuntu: I am because you are!” This welcoming phrase not only greets Minneapolis service trip participants, but is a theme intertwined in this rich, cross-cultural immersion. Share meals and converse with passionate, engaged members of the North Minneapolis community, including our host, the Visitation Sisters. The peacefulness and hospitality of the St. Jane House is apt for meditation, conversation, and education. By attending a service at a mosque and partaking in an immigration reform protest, participants encounter a wide range of cross-culture experiences and political activism. Participants can engage in meaningful and thought-provoking service opportunities, such as preparing groceries for refugees, painting church interiors, and working alongside Urban Homeworks, a non-profit community developer. With a focus on cross-cultural understanding and educational dialogue, participants encounter a vast richness of culture, religion, and social justice issues.
Relevant Websites: St. Jane House US Conference of Catholic Bishops Economic Justice
Montgomery, AL – Resurrection Catholic Missions
Resurrection Catholic Missions reaches out to the community around it. Some of the things that you may do here include working in Resurrection Catholic School (tutoring, P.E., reading, etc.), assisting with the interfaith Community Outreach program (cleaning homes, yard work, delivering meals), visiting the residents at a group home for several mentally and cognitively challenged adults. The trip also includes learning and discussing the role of the civil rights movement in Montgomery, AL through tours to various sites such as Tuskegee Institute, Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Rosa Parks Museum, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s church and home, an optional visit to MLK’s barber shop to meet MLK’s barber, and others. One evening is set aside for dinner with individuals who participated in the Civil Rights Movement as well as individuals who are active in addressing current social justice issues.
Relevant Websites: Resurrection Catholic Missions, US Conference of Catholic Bishops Economic Justice
Mobile, AL – Daughters of Charity
Daughters of Charity in Alabama
The students will be living with the Daughters of Charity and working with Catholic Service Center, a part of Catholic Charities. Each day will be something different at this site. Days of service will include engaging with people experiencing poverty, organizing a clothing store, one day at the L’arche Community, one day at an elementary school and one day working in Bayou La Batre (a very poor area in the southern part of Mobile County that was hit hard by Hurricane Katrina and is currently being affected by the gulf oil spill). Creighton students will have to attend the Omaha Safe Environment Training before leaving for this site.
Relevant Websites: Daughters of Charity, Oil Spill Blog,
Oklahoma City, OK – Oscar Romero Catholic Worker
Students are invited to radical hospitality, outreach to those in need, peace, justice and sustainability. The Oscar Romero Catholic Worker Community is an unincorporated autonomous lay association within the Catholic Worker charism engaged in the works of justice, peace, and mercy as we have ability, resources, and opportunity. How can volunteers help? Delivering food to the poor, live more just and sustainable lifestyles. Mother Teresa used to beg the rich to “take less, so that there will be more for others.”
Stroud, OK – Habitat for Humanity
More than Hammers and Nails
Do you know, or want to learn, how to build a house? Work with Stroud’s Habitat for Humanity chapter to build or prepare to build a home for a family in this warm Oklahoma community. “Habitat for Humanity benefits the community as much as it does individual families. Habitat homes are well built by community members and our home owners are proud and responsible neighbors.” This town is still in the process of rebuilding after an F-5 tornado hit in the late 90s which wiped out their economic centers.
Relevant Website: National Habitat for Humanity, Stroud Habitat for Humanity, National Low Income Housing Coalition,