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Students Spend Spring Break Helping Others

RHO students forgo traditional week off to perform service for those in need.

Written by Lauren Kozlovsky

Alternative Spring Break

Raiders Helping Others

A group of Texas Tech University students strayed away from “traditional” spring break trips and recently traveled to Moore, Okla. and Kissimmee, Fla. for not-so-traditional alternative spring break trips.

Texas Tech’s Raiders Helping Others (RHO) hosted spring break service trips for students to take action and perform community service for those in need. Members will host a post-trip presentation for the campus community at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday (April 3) in Talkington Hall Multipurpose Room.

Founded in 2010, RHO is a group of residence hall students who are committed to bettering the community through ongoing service efforts. Members perform at least two community service projects a month throughout the academic year and have the opportunity to participate in a week-long distance service over spring break.

This year, RHO students exceeded their goal and put in more than 600 service hours during the week.

Eight students and two advisors traveled to Kissimmee to volunteer at Give Kids the World (GKTW) resort. GKTW is a 70-acre resort serving the needs of children with life-threatening illnesses. RHO served and prepared meals, performed needed maintenance on resort property and worked closely with terminally ill children and their families.

Whitney Shaffer, a sophomore from Amarillo majoring in biochemistry, joined RHO for her first alternative spring break.

“My experience was unlike any other,” Shaffer said. “It truly changed my life because it opened my eyes to different situations families face daily and showed me how valuable the little things are, and I can’t wait to volunteer again.”

Shaffer advises students who love volunteering and helping those in need to join RHO because of the opportunities to get involved.

Another group of ten students and three advisors traveled to Moore to volunteer with IMPACT ministries and help rebuilding efforts in the city. During their trip, the group assisted with various construction projects, landscaping and community development type tasks.

Joey Buffano, a sophomore from Colleyville majoring in human sciences, attended his first alternative spring break in Moore. He assisted in the tornado relief and cleanup efforts from the tornado that hit almost a year ago.

“I think my time spent there was very gratifying and helpful,” Buffano said. “I am thankful for the experience and I advise students to become involved in serving the community and remember that the beach will always be there, but the chance to change lives may not.”

Buffano said it was rewarding to have the chance to meet survivors of the tornado and hear their personal stories during his spring break.

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