Seton Hill University students and staff spent part of their J-Term break giving back to families in need. For the eighth year, Seton Hill students and faculty volunteered with Habitat for Humanity.

This year, a total of 18 volunteers traveled to Americus, Ga., and worked on homes in the rural area. Volunteers arrived in Georgia on January 16 and stayed until January 23.

“We completed detailed work on a home that was nearly done,” said Cynthia Boland, director of Campus Ministry. “We put a second coat of paint on the outside of the house and attached fascia board all around the roof and porch of the house. We also painted interior doors and walls, installed window sills and base boards and completed touch ups.”

In addition to working on homes, Seton Hill volunteers had the opportunity to visit Americus and the Global Village Center.

“The Global Village Center is the center of Habitat International. It is a six-acre educational site that features models of Habitat houses from around the world. It was very eye opening,” said Boland.

Seeing students give back was very rewarding for Boland.

“It is always inspiring for me to see young people getting involved and making a difference in people’s lives, especially those who are in great need,” said Boland. “This was our eighth year of taking an alternative break trip. It started with a handful of enthusiastic and motivated students who really wanted to do something meaningful and it has taken off from there. It is one of the most anticipated programs we offer every year.”

Boland hopes that the alternative break trips will become a tradition that Seton Hill students will continue in years to come.

“It is my hope that the same enthusiasm that started this tradition eight years ago, that of the students, will keep it going year after year. As long as there is inspiration and desire to help the less fortunate coursing through the veins of our students, there will be a Habitat for Humanity trip. I have no doubt,” said Boland.