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January 13-18, 2013

Students:  Housna Adali, Byeongyong Kim, Michelle Martin, Erin McNamara, Adesumbo Odunlami, Priscilla Obeid, Amirreza Saharkhiz, Sarah Sauder, Stacie Tippett, and Daniel Woo

Advisors:  Stacy Korbelak and Mary Ann Massoglia

During one of the Center for Service Learning's 2013 Alternative Winter Break trips, students traveled to Kissimmee, Florida to volunteer with the Give Kids the World Village.  The Give Kids the World Village is a 70-acre non-profit "storybook" resort located near Florida's most beloved attractions where children with life-threatening illnesses and their families are treated to a week-long, cost-free fantasy vacation.  Unlike traditional theme parks, every ride, game and activity at Give Kids the World has been made fully accessible to every individual, regardless of any mobility or medical equipment a guest may need to use.  Our AWB participants helped fill the 1,400 shifts required to operate the resort.  At the end of the week, they were all characters in the Winter Wonderland Parade.  They had the pleasure of interacting with 32 Israeli children and their families who were visiting the resort.

The group also volunteered with Heavenly Hoofs, a therapeutic riding organization in South Floria.  They assisted with preparations for upcoming Special Olympics events by painting equipment and cleaning up the paddocks where the events would be held.                          

group at airport

The group met at BWI airport to embark on their Alternative Break Trip.

  grocery shopping

Once they arrived in Kissimmee and were settled in the house, they went out to purchase groceries for the week. (Pictured, left to right: Stacie, Michelle, Yong, Amir, and Priscilla.)

playground entranceAmir in playground

Amir poses at one of the playgrounds in the Give Kids the World Village

Daniel vacuuming

Daniel cleans up the dining area in one of the food huts.

Carousel ride

Housna and Stacie ride on the carousel.  One of the shifts that the group filled during the week was assisting guests with this ride.

cutting cake for guests

Stacie cuts the cake at one of the on-site parties.

parade princessesparade soldiers

In the Winter Wonderland Parade, some of our participants were princesses (Priscilla, Stacie), and others were soldiers (Daniel, Yong, Amir)...

parade Mary Ann and Stacy

but our advisors were Mrs. Clause and an elf!

cleaning the paddockpainting jumping gates

The group cleaned and painted at Heavenly Hoofs in preparation for upcoming Special Olympics events.

group with Heavenly Hoofs horse

All in all, they did a lot of work and had a great week!

The 2013 Kissimmee Winter Break trip was a wonderful experience.  Our thanks to the dedicated students and advisors who participated!