CSA in the News
Our annual trip to the Dominican Republic began today! Here's our group before takeoff (looking pretty cheery for pre-6 a.m.) They'll spend the week serving and learning with long-time Virginia Tech partner the Community Service Alliance.
In “the DR,” trip participants work with a local non-profit organization to learn about the country, its history, and culture. They do so while visiting local and international organizations engaged in efforts to safeguard the health of the country’s people and by collaborating with a dedicated team of local Health Promoters to complete a specially designed service learning project. DR trip participants also get the chance to tour the country’s historic capital city of Santo Domingo and to enjoy some of the island’s beautiful beaches.
Poverty-stricken residents in several rural Dominican Republic communities received life-changing assistance from Daemen College students who journeyed to the developing country on a two-week service learning trip in January.
The Daemen group engaged in several hands-on projects, from providing clean drinking water to addressing public health issues, to help improve the daily lives of the local people. This marked the seventh trip students have participated in service in the Dominican Republic.
February 1st, 2011
During the 2011 Intersession, Daemen College students returned to Hato Mayor, a small community in the Dominican Republic, to engage in service learning projects that have enabled Daemen students to improve the lives of village residents.
This was the fifth year Daemen College has partnered with Community Service Alliance (CSA), a Dominican-based service learning organization that pairs school, church, and community groups with diverse projects in many areas of the country. Student members of the Daemen group, which included Daemen Director of Residence Life Sara C. Anderson, were in the Dominican Republic from January 8-22, 2011.
February 14th, 2011
The ZL program took on new urgency after the earthquake when thousands of Haitians fled to the DR in search of medical care, housing, and food. People who were receiving treatment for HIV, TB, and MDR-TB in Haiti were forced to abandon their treatments, not only endangering their own health, but also potentially compounding the risk to public health if disruptions in treatment enabled their diseases to become drug-resistant.
Since then, PIH/ZL has been working with Community Service Alliance, the Ministry of Health in the Dominican Republic, and USAID-DR to organize this expansion. Many of the Haitian and Dominican staff members participating in this cross-border project have been working in the region for years, if not decades.
Betania, a 7-year-old who is noticeably small for her age, and her younger sister spent two days lugging rocks in 80-degree heat. The girls, who live in the village of El Mangito, had taken it upon themselves to establish a plot for their family to grow a garden. This sight, encountered by a group of Colgate students on their recent trip to the Dominican Republic, signified a victory and a turning point — both for them and for the village. The nine students and Daniel Mandell, assistant director of the COVE (Center for Outreach, Volunteerism, and Education), had spent their spring break digging family gardens and providing nutrition education to a community with an urgent need. It was hoped that the group's work would inspire residents to continue and build upon their work after they left.
January 16, 2007
Elizabeth Conklin-Ballester '00 went on a "yearlong" service trip to the Dominican Republic after graduation. She's still there.
This wasn’t exactly the plan,” admits Elizabeth Conklin-Ballester ’00. “My plan was to come and volunteer [in theDominican Republic] for a year. But I met the love of my life and have gotten the opportunity to be involved in really interesting development work in public health and education.” The best-laid plans sometimes go awry, but Elizabeth, who graduated from Ithaca College with a degree in health education, isn’t feeling the slightest bit disappointed. Just the opposite, in fact.