Alternative Break Experiences (ABE)
"ABE will change your life if you open your heart and mind to the experiences you have. Step outside your comfort zone and be vulnerable. You will learn so much about the world and yourself."
-Dominican Republic Participant, 2014
What is ABE?
ABE is an ecumenical program offered through CSB Campus Ministry that works to provide meaningful, service-oriented trips, both nationally and internationally. We firmly believe that exposure to other cultures, places, and ways of life will enhance the lives and perspectives of trip participants. We differ from mission trips in that our purpose is not to spread the Word of the Lord but rather to attend to the needs of the community through service while also learning about the issues each commuity faces. We strive to provide quality experiences that will complement academic experiences and inspire hearts.
"I am only one,but still I am one.
I cannot do everything, but still I can do something;
And because I cannot do everything,
I will not refuse to do the something that I can do."
- Edward Everett Hale
Students, co-leaders and staff combine the 5 Pillars of ABE as a framework to guide their trip experience. Alternative Break Experiences are not typical mission trips, and our participants are not typical tourists. By embracing these pillars, our participants grow in values-based leadership and develop a more integrated global vision. Derived from our Catholic and Benedictine heritage, the concepts of Social Justice, Community, Reflection, Learning and Intentional Living merge, offering participants an experience to inspire their lives.
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Alternative Break Experience Campus Ministers
Jill Valerius, Katie Reisdorf, Carley Castellanos, Briana Ziemer, Claire Baker and Grace Bandel
Alternative Break Experiences (ABE) aims to:
- raise awareness of social issues and injustices
- encourage reflection and questioning
- move towards integrating justice and service into life
- encourage a polycentric world view
- encourage both individual and shared leadership
- integrate faith into the fabric of the experience
- approach the trips as a partnership with other people
- foster respect and community among the participants
- provide a fun, safe and challenging break experience