|The whole group is ready to work!
Today marked the first full day of service for the Alternative Spring Break National Program where thirty Hofstra University students and two staff members are working with the National Relief Network in Bayboro, North Carolina. We arrived on site bright and early this morning to a pile of wood, shingles, doors, and pipes. A home that had been condemned due to water damage from last year’s Hurricane Irene was demolished and gutted out. While it was not highlighted in the news, the Outer Banks coast of North Carolina suffered greatly after Hurricane Irene came through. All day we broke up all the debris, mostly wood, and transported it all into dump trucks to be carried away from the site.
|The site before we started working
It was a lot of hard work, but everyone was challenging and pushing themselves to try something new and not be afraid to get dirty! The Mayor of Bayboro even stopped by to thank us all for the work we have been doing and to say how much the community appreciates our help. After lunch, we had another popular visitor stop by, a golden shepherd that some of us have named Fred. Later on in the day dark gray clouds moved in, but we did not let the rain bring us down. We kept on working just as hard through the weather and the rubble turning the mountain of debris into a pile of mere shingles by the end of the day. Some may have looked at this pile as merely a pile of garbage, but we were aware that this used to be someone’s home. Occasionally we would find lost artifacts (a small child’s boot, a vintage dial-tone telephone) and we would set them aside as we continued to work, respecting the family who left them behind. They also helped to remind us all that the work we were doing was important.
|Everyone is working hard!
In the evening we reflected upon the obstacles we experienced throughout the day, both literal and metaphorical. We not only braved through the rubble, but we developed trust in our fellow trip-goers. We worked together as a team, most notably when we formed an assembly line to carry all the water damaged debris to the dumpsters. Moving forward we hope to keep our morale high throughout the week and look forward to learning new skills and making lasting friendships that last a lifetime.
|At the end of the day, our pile was almost gone!
Blog written by: Victoria Bohme, Class of 2014 and Claudia Balthazar, Class of 2014