A Week of Impact: Ohio State’s 2024 Alternative Break

In March, volunteers from The Ohio State University participated in AHS’ Alternative Break program at the York River State Park in James City County, Virginia. This annual program allows college students all across the United States to meaningfully engage in outdoor service projects during their spring breaks.

The crew’s week was marked by a perfect blend of hard work and time spent in nature. One volunteer noted, “The balance between hard work and time for reflection provided me with a routine that I will try to implement in my own life in Columbus. I am grateful for the experiences provided by this Alternative Break program; thank you for your hospitality and generosity this past week.”

Volunteers also had time for fun throughout the week. One of their “most memorable experiences from the trip was having a group bonfire”, where The Ohio State students “bonded over making s’mores, stargazing, and enjoying time in the great outdoors”.

Their impact was immense, as echoed by the project host from York River State Park: “This is a group that we love to host here. They have always been a joy to work with and truly help us to improve the park for our guests. This is something the staff always look forward to in the spring. They have always left their mark on this park and the staff.”

During their time at the park, they reclaimed 150,000 square feet, restored 1 mile of trail, removed 200 board feet of old boardwalks, and installed 16 feet of new steps. We are incredibly grateful to all the volunteers from The Ohio State who dedicated their time and energy to making a lasting difference in our trails and natural areas. Thank you for your hard work and dedication to conservation! 

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.