Sarah Elliott – Spring 2016 Post Reflection (SC)

I had the privilege of leading the alternative spring break trip to South Carolina. I will be the first to admit that planning this trip was a struggle from start to finish. The first trip/place I had planned to go to fell through, and I wasn’t even sure I wanted to go to South Carolina. After attempting to contact many other organizations I didn’t have any other plans. The biggest challenge of this trip was patience. So often I was waiting on other people to reply to emails, to fill out their paperwork, knowing I had so much to do I just could not do it yet. As it started to get closer to time to leave and I started to talk to the people in SC more, either through the church or St Bernard’s Project, I became more confident and excited in what we were going to be doing. It was amazing to me the damage that the area still has even months after the flood. Especially after being there and talking with the organizations, I became more aware of the political disputes holding back further construction and clean-up. I was excited that what we were doing mattered and we could see the direct impact we had both physically on the house and in the lives of people we worked with. I wouldn’t say my classes helped during the planning and execution of this trip. I am thankful for the leadership opportunities I have had in both PELP and AOII that gave me experience in dealing with people and perseverance when things do not go according to plan. Overall I would say that despite the rough start of planning this trip, the final outcome was very successful and a great learning experience for all involved.

 

Sarah Elliott

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