Lynn students doing community service, locally and internationally

Students traveling to Jamaica and Haiti with Food for the Poor this week, in addition to efforts at Boca’s Spanish River Park, Boca Helping Hands and Habitat for Humanity
Lynn students doing community service, locally and internationally As part of professor Anna Krift's J-term class, “Talking Trash and Tracking Turtles,” last year (Jan. 2009), students went to the beach and collected several bags of trash

Published Jan. 07, 2010

Over the next few weeks, Lynn students (who were named to the 2008 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll) are spending their time tackling community service projects – locally and internationally. Four 2010 J-Term courses are geared toward service learning.

This year’s service learning courses include: “Local Service: Global Impact,” “Talking Trash and Tracking Turtles,” “Journey of Hope to Jamaica” and “Journey of Hope to Haiti.” While in the field, students will be cleaning beaches, building homes and feeding underprivileged individuals, among other tasks.

Just yesterday, two groups of Lynn students departed with Food For The Poor, the largest international relief and development organization in the United States working in the Caribbean and Latin America, for the Journey of Hope courses to Jamaica and Haiti.

In its second consecutive year, the Journey of Hope courses in particular have had profound effects on Lynn students. In fact, after returning from Haiti last year, the students formed an on-campus club, Students For The Poor, to raise awareness of poverty in Haiti, Jamaica and neighboring Caribbean countries. After a weeklong demonstration in April 2009 on Lynn’s campus, the students raised $33,000 to build a basic school in Jamaica and a water well in Haiti, and to purchase and ship 1,000 pounds of rice and beans to Jamaica for the destitute.

“This Journey of Hope trip to Jamaica was an eye-opening experience for me,” said Mike DeMatteo, a Students For The Poor member who traveled with Food For The Poor to Jamaica last year. “I wanted to help change lives as much as this experience changed mine. I believe education is the foundation for that change.”

Locally, students will be helping the community through a series of beach cleanups at Boca Raton’s Red Reef Park and Spanish River Park, in addition to volunteering at Boca Helping Hands and Habitat for Humanity in Delray Beach.