Alternative Break Experience

Alternative Spring Break 2017

Please join us this March for our alternative spring break trip! We’re returning to Eastern North Carolina to work with rape crisis centers and domestic violence organizations and learn about how they support their local communities. We’ll be serving organizations in New Bern, Wilmington, Leland, and Holden Beach. See below for examples of work we’ve done on previous trips!

The Alternative Break Experience will last from Saturday, March 11 to Saturday, March 18. The cost for the trip is $75, which includes transportation, lodging, and most meals.

Apply here by 11:59pm on Thursday, February 9!

For more information, email Shelley Gist at

Previous Alternative Break Experiences:

Fall Break

For our fall break trip, we partnered with Our Voice, a rape crisis center in Asheville, NC. Our team of nine undergraduate students participated in a bar outreach program. The goal of the bar outreach program was to educate bartenders and bar owners about drug and alcohol facilitated sexual assault and encourage bystander intervention. We received training from Our Voice and then split up in teams to cover the town, going into bars, restaurants, and clubs across Asheville. Our team was equipped with informational handouts for bar owners, educational sheets to distribute to bartenders and other staff members, information on upcoming bystander intervention trainings through Our Voice, and tear off sheets for bathroom stalls with Our Voice’s rape crisis hotline number. We had a lot of success in our conversations with bar staff, and many people were interested in receiving further training in intervention through Our Voice!

In addition to our outreach work, our group got to explore downtown Asheville, hike in the Blue Ridge Mountains, have group discussions about our experiences and what we learned, and bond as a team! The next step was to bring what we learned back to Chapel Hill to work with Raise the Bar to help improve awareness and safety in our own community.

To read one student’s experience on the trip, check out this blog post!


Spring Break

For our pilot run of the Alternative Break Program, we took a team of ten undergraduate students on a nine-day trip to eastern NC to work with local domestic violence, sexual assault, and child serving organizations. Over the course of the trip, we performed manual labor such as painting, sanding, yard work, and organizing spaces; we also collected over 4,000 lbs of food for the Food Bank of Central and Eastern NC and helped out with the Brigade Boys and Girls Club after school program.

While at The Promise Place of New Bern and The Carousel Center in Wilmington, we met with the organizations’ directors to hear about how their programs run, how their services benefit people, what it looks like to be in their line of work, and how our work helped further their efforts to serve the local community. Our team was also given a 3-hour training on child sexual abuse prevention.

In addition, we got to explore the two towns, spend some time on the beach, bond as a team, and have group discussions about the issues of poverty, gender equity, and child abuse. It was a really great experience and we’re looking forward to expanding the program in the future!