Domestic Service Trips
MOVE’s Mission continues to expand the concept of community service to embrace social justice; this is the heart of our service trips. These trips cover a wide variety of different justice issues, as we strive to engage in justice through service. It is our opportunity to honor the life and dignity of others, understand a greater call to our community, advocate for those living in poverty, and begin living in solidarity with others whose life experiences may be different from ours.
We have worked with organizations who work for the following justice issues:
Child Poverty and Education
Migrant Farm Work
Native American Rights
Our Student and Staff Leaders organize time in service, reflection, and thinking about how to bring our serving actions back home. In past years, we have sent an average of 125 students, faculty, and staff to 11 domestic locations, and two international sites, for service each year during school breaks.
*The number of service trip sites that we offer each year is subject to change with the evolving COVID-19 pandemic as well as changing community needs. The current service trip offerings for the 2022-2023 academic year will be announced at the Service Trip Information Sessions offered in Mid-September
Domestic Service Trips
Habitat for Humanity, East St. Tammany, Slidell, Louisiana
Participants focus on housing security and food security while serving in Slidell & New Orleans, Louisiana. They spend much of the week working with Habitat for Humanity in housing construction and at New Orleans Mission (NOM) addressing the immediate needs of those who are experiencing homelessness or food insecurity by serving and sharing meals with the community. Participants also volunteer at Giving Hope Retreat Center & Lynhaven Retreat Center of NOM, which are rehabilitation centers for men and women, and participate in a variety of projects to support the centers.
Participants spend a majority of their time at three homeless shelters and soup kitchens: St. Elizabeth’s House, Immaculate Conception Emergency Shelter (ImmaCare), and House of Bread, where volunteers will assist with meal prep, serving meals, and building connections with residents. Participants also work with middle school students during the after-school program at Alfred E. Burr Community School, helping with homework and facilitating activities & lessons.
Hope House, Port Jefferson, Long Island
Hope House Ministries is a multifaceted social service agency grounded in ministry, and provides 9 different social service programs to youth and adults who may suffer from homelessness, drug or alcohol abuse, emotional or mental health diagnoses, or domestic abuse. Participants engage largely through service of presence and engage with young men aged 16-21 at the Pax Christi Hospitality Center & Montfort Therapeutic Residence. Participants also have the opportunity to explore & serve in the other social service programs at Hope House. This trip is encouraged for students who major in psychology, sociology, or education, or want to explore a career in the social services industry, although all majors are accepted.
Edmundite Missions, Selma, Alabama
Participants on this trip will have the opportunity to explore the Edmundite mission of St. Mike’s through working alongside the ministry of Edmundite Missions in Selma, AL and Mosses, AL. Students will understand the historical roots of the needs of those living deeply disadvantaged circumstances in the Black Belt of the Deep South. The Missions meets the food insecurity needs of the poor with dignity, and participants will assist with preparing and serving meals at the Bosco Nutrition Center in Selma and work in the Good Shepherd food Mart in Mosses. Engaging in a ministry of presence, participants also spend quality time with youth and the elderly at the Bullock Community and Recreation Center in Selma. Students have the opportunity on this trip to engage with the historical Civil Rights monuments and museums to gain a deeper understanding of the Civil Rights Movement and racism within the U.S.
Catholic Central School, Buffalo, New York
Participants volunteer at the boys’ & girls’ campuses of Catholic Central School, which is modeled after the Jesuit-based Nativity Network and provides nearly completely funded private education for students in Buffalo. They serve in the St. Monica School for Young Women and the St. Augustine School for Young Men, and have an opportunity to work with a diverse group of students, including African-Americans and new Americans, during the school day and in the after-school program. An annual tradition is for participants to organize a school store at both schools for students to “shop” for clothing, shoes, and other supplies. This trip is encouraged for education majors, although all majors are accepted.
Immokalee Friendship House & Habitat for Humanity, Immokalee, Florida
Participants work with the local Habitat for Humanity building homes for migrant workers in the community. In the afternoon, participants serve in classrooms and in the after-school program at a bilingual elementary/middle school, Redlands Christian Migrant Association (RCMA) Immokalee Community Academy, which largely serves children of the migrant farm worker community. Participants also have the opportunity to go on a learning tour of the Coalition for Immokalee Workers, which is an organization that advocates for farm worker rights.
Mercy Ecospirituality Center, Benson, VT
Run by the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Ecospirituality Center focuses on connecting people with nature and healing the earth by weaving together practices like local outreach, gardening, beekeeping, farming and sustainability. Participants partake in a variety of activities on the farm and at neighboring local farms planting & sowing seeds, doing trail maintenance, and caring for farm animals. In the evenings, participants will have the chance to engage in ecospiritual reflection, as the Sisters of Mercy have come to know their connection to nature as a spiritual practice that invites everyone to contemplate and engage with the world in an intentional way, developing a more insightful and meaningful relationship with the self and the world around us.