A Week of Impact: Heartland University’s 2024 Alternative Break

There are a variety of reasons why a college student might choose to spend their spring break on an AHS Alternative Break, a service-oriented trip that allows volunteers to immerse themselves in diverse communities and contribute to meaningful projects.

For one of our participants from Heartland University, the motivation stems from a passion for travel and environmental stewardship. They shared, “I have a passion for travel and supporting/sustaining the unique and diverse ecosystems of each place I visit. When an email was sent out to Heartland staff about this opportunity, I pursued it knowing that I could have an opportunity to impact a community I have never been to before.” 

Throughout the week, volunteers from Heartland worked on the Raiders Run Trail of Hungry Mother State Park in Marion, Virginia. Their efforts resulted in the construction of a full mile of trail, enhancing the hiking experience of the 80,000 visitors that frequent Raiders Run every year.

According to one volunteer, the most memorable part of the trip was undoubtedly the amazing and friendly staff. They expressed that “Everyone we met was such a joy to learn from and become acquainted with throughout the week. I would’ve personally stayed longer to get to know them as friends!” The warmth and hospitality shown to the volunteers by the project hosts truly made the experience unforgettable.

To learn more about Alternative Breaks and how your college or youth group can participate, check out our website

AHS also offers Volunteer Vacations, which is a great way for individuals of all ages to combine their passion for travel with meaningful service work. These trips provide a unique opportunity to make a positive impact while exploring new destinations and cultures.

Finally, if you’d like to participate in National Trails Day events organized by AHS, where volunteers come together to celebrate and improve trails across the country, learn more here.