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Alternative Fall Breaks

October 13 - 16, 2022

Accessible and Affordable Healthcare

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Community Partner: Northern Neck - Middlesex Free Health Clinic (NNMFHC) in Kilmarnock, VA. NNMFHC has provided $112,876,244 worth of services from 1993 through 2018, working to fill critical health-care gaps in Virginia. The Clinic serves low-income, uninsured and under-insured residents in Lancaster, Middlesex, Northumberland, Richmond and Westmoreland counties – an extensive, rural area in Tidewater Virginia.

Social Issue: Accessible and Affordable Healthcare in Rural Communities

Activities: Participants will assist in administrative tasks in the health clinic and explore the topic of social justice in the health care system. They will have the opportunity to observe the day-to-day operations of the clinic, including pharmacy practices and shadowing dentists. Participants will learn about racial equity and accessibility in the medical field.

Housing: NNMFHC will provide dormitory-style housing. Participants should bring a sleeping bag, pillow, and towel for showering.

Economic and Community Development: Alleviating Root Causes of Poverty

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Community Partner: The Rural Appalachian Improvement League, Inc. (RAIL) in Mullens, West Virginia. This organization initially began in 2001 to provide assistance to a county that was destroyed by floods. RAIL then grew to provide the southern West Virginia community with economic opportunities through GED training, social service support and youth employment programs. RAIL also works to increase engagement and development in their community, with an emphasis on healthy living, by promoting environmental learning.

Social Issue: Economic and community development in rural communities

Activities: Participants will spend a majority of their time working on environmental community projects such as maintaining river entries and other building projects in recreational parks. Participants will also have the opportunity to interact with individuals of the Southern West Virginia community and learn more about Appalachian culture.

Housing: Dormitory-style, provided by RAIL. Participants should bring a sleeping bag, pillow, and towel for showering.

Breakers for the Bay: Saving a National Treasure

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Community Partner: The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) in Upper Marlboro and Annapolis, MD, which includes Clagett Farm, which raises crops, cattle, and sheep and supports a Community Supported Agriculture program and tree farm, and the Phillip Merrill Environmental Center.

Social Issue: Breakers will learn about food access, regenerative agriculture, and environmental stewardship.

Activities: Participants will spend part of their time at Clagett Farm, a working farm whose ultimate goal is to use farming methods that are truly sustainable, both economically and environmentally. Alternative breakers will perform service with Clagett’s native tree and shrub nursery, the Phillip Merrill Environmental Center, and other local farms. In addition to their farm work, participants will learn about advocacy and policy work.

Housing: In two houses at West River Retreat Center; participants will sleep in beds and bring their own linens.