BENEFITING: SPRING HILL COLLEGE
Almost ten years ago in the spring of 2004, Dodie Ward, Jeremy Biddy and I, along with some brave students, embarked upon an unknown service experience to Belize City. We had one contact, Sr. Mercy, finding us work, a “reservation” at what turned out to be a very sketchy guesthouse and absolutely no idea what we would be doing until we landed. But, it was during that week that we came to know the people of Hand in Hand Ministries, and helped to renovate a house they had just purchased to serve as an HIV/AIDS daycare center. Since that time, our groups have worked in that center with the children every year!
This year students will be building our 9th SHC house in Belize City during the week of March 1-8, 2014! The growth of the International Service Immersion Program (ISIP) is by far, the greatest blessing I have experienced in my time in Campus Ministry – and coming to know so many of you so well through these trips has been an additional blessing. Now it’s time to ask you for your continued support of this program by encouraging you to give a donation in whatever amount you can afford. Some of you have sent a contribution every year since your graduation (thank you!!!) and I am always pleased to be able to tell our current students of your great support. I also love the personal notes you send along with your contributions!
Forty-eight students and eleven faculty and staff will be participating in five trips March 1-8, 2014. This year, we have again expanded our program to include an immersion trip to the Dominican Republic with International Partners in Mission. Because of the desire to keep bringing on new fac/staff advisors, I will sit out this year in Mobile and just worry about everyone for a week!! Advisors for the trips and locations are:
Doc Wilson (Theology) & Rhonda Shirazi (Finance) – Belize City
Don Culberson (Biology) & Joy Morris (Finance) & Dodie Ward (Wellness) - Punta Gorda
Billy Kavula (Campus Ministry) & Wanda Sullivan (Fine Arts) – Dominican Republic
Lindsay Hughes (Communications and Marketing) & Laury Rowland (Public Safety) -Jamaica
Colleen Lee (Campus Ministry) & Chris Hughes (IT) - Nicaragua
For the second year, we will have an overnight retreat called “The Pillars,” based on the five pillars of the program: learning, faith, justice, service for life and community. Last year, this bonding experience proved to be a great way for each group to get to know each other in a relaxed atmosphere and to accomplish some real team building. Our students are energetic about fund-raisers – we will be selling fall mums and Christmas wreaths, mailing Exam-A-Grams (remember the fun of stuffing those?) and Christmas caroling this semester. Next semester, we’ll do the famous jambalaya lunch and sponsor the Run of the Hill 5 K for the second year during Homecoming on the Hill. The 5K was the idea and work of one of our students who coordinated this fund-raiser as her senior Communication Arts seminar. It brought our program $6400.00! Class of ’04 – it’s your ten year reunion in 2014 and I hope to see many of you at Homecoming on the Hill!
There appears to be interest from some of you in an Alumni trip to Belize City. I am certainly willing to do the legwork if at least ten of you are interested in a trip in May or June, 2014. It would be great to have Spring Hill alums build the SHC House #10!! Hand in Hand charges $1,000 per person for program fees, room and board, which includes a day at Caye Caulker and at least two other sight-seeing opportunities. I would also ask you to pledge an amount of your choice for the next two years to contribute to the sustainability of our program.
I am pleased to tell you that there are now 140 of you receiving this letter! I know many of you are involved in your own service work and have few extra funds to spare. Please know if that is the case, then all I ask for are your prayers. We did not receive an anticipated grant last year and we were forced to deplete most of our reserve funds, so your support this year is so important.
If you can manage to send $20, $50 or $100, your gift will be much appreciated. All donations to ISIP are processed through the SHC Advancement Office, so your contribution to the Service/Immersion Program is recorded as a contribution to the college. Please know that you have my gratitude for what you did in the past to make what we are doing today possible!
Thank you for visiting our Crowdrise page.