Doesn’t Alternative Service Breaks just contribute to colonialism and the White-Savior Industrial Complex?
Alright. Let’s just jump right in then! This is an important question. One that we take very seriously and discuss extensively in our leadership trainings. UK ASB is committed to providing service to community partners, which is specifically requested by the host site. This means that we include community partners in the development of our service experiences, rather than assuming we know best. UK ASB rejects “voluntourism,” recognizing that this type of service can often do harm to communities. We are not always perfect, but we are always trying to learn, grow, and improve.
How much does it cost to go on an ASB trip?
Over the past several years, UK ASB has made great progress in reducing the cost of our service trips. Our trip costs can be found on our Program Payments page. It is important to us that financial accessibility is not an insurmountable barrier to participation in our program. Therefore, we have several opportunities for individual and group fundraising throughout the year and a scholarship pool which will be awarded to applicants based on need and merit.
How does housing work for ASB?
All housing on the trips is provided by UK ASB. If you live in a dorm, your dorm may be closed over Spring Break, meaning you may not be able to stay there before or after your trip. Let your Site Leaders know about this and they’ll be able to set up housing for you! If you have any concerns about accommodations or special needs, please email the director at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will work together on a solution.
Can I get credit for going on an Alternative Service Break?
Yes! In the Spring semester, we offer a course on active citizenship for ASB participants. This bi-weekly course prepares students to get the most out of their ASB experience, including deepening education and awareness of the interconnections between various social issues. Those who apply and are accepted to be site leaders participate in a weekly course exploring this content in more depth, as well as learning leadership skills and preparing for effectively leading their trips.
Are there opportunities to advance in the organization?
Absolutely! We have tiers of leadership and involvement, including volunteers, participants, coordinators, site leaders, and executive team membership. If you have a passion for leadership, promotions, graphic design, fundraising, management, teaching, etc., there’s a way we could utilize and expand your talents within our organization!
I’m still on the fence…
We get it! Participating in an “alternative break” isn’t always as appealing as a “standard break.” However, we can guarantee that UK ASB can offer deep connections, meaningful service, lasting friendships, and lifelong lessons. We would love to meet with you to discuss your personal interests and passions. Even if ASB isn’t the organization for you, the UK Center for Community Outreach has many ways for you to connect with the issues you care about. Stop by any time to talk about ASB or other programs in the Student Center room A255!