Urban Plunge Mission Experience: Chicago/Dayton '17
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We are 13 Duquesne University students, from various educational programs all interested in social justice and living the Duquesne mission, will participate in a Cross-Cultural Mission Experience (CCME) in Dayton, Ohio and Chicago, Illinois. This is the third year Duquesne students will be traveling to these urban communities to immerse themselves into a world of poverty and faith, working as allies with the community members and trying to understand their hardships.
When and where are we going?
We will be traveling from the Bluff to the Windy City on Saturday, March 4, 2017, and we will spend our spring break partaking in community projects to aid our Spiritan partners in Chicago and Dayton.
In Chicago, Illinois, we will join the St Ambrose congregation for Mass on the first Sunday of our trip. This parish is on the border of the Hyde Park and Kenwood neighborhoods, and our group will have the opportunity to visit the DuSable Museum of African American History. In Chicago, we will be working with low-income individuals on hospice care, and we will also serve families in need by assisting a local food bank/soup kitchen. Soup Kitchen hosted by the Kenwood United Church of Christ. Working with the Alexian Brothers health care ministry at Bettendorf Place, a residential facility for low-income people with disabilities.
Midweek, our group will then travel to Dayton, Ohio to see firsthand the effects of urban decline and deindustrialization. We will be working with St. Benedict the Moor parish, assisting them with renovations to their school and working with students. The diocese of Dayton recently withdrew its support of this catholic school, but the church community decided the school must remain open as an option for families in the neighborhood. This change caused the school to scale back its services so there is currently only 6 grade levels: kindergarten, first grade, second grade, third grade, fourth grade, and fifth grade.
How you can help?
We are planning to use the funds raised through crowdfunding to purchase a large piece of playground equipment, which our group will install at St Benedict the Moor School in Dayton. When we began, the playground was only an empty lot and the children are in need of structured play equipment. In the last couple of years we have been able to provide the children with various board games, educational material, and other recreational equipment. Our ultimate goal is to raise enough money to acquire a swing set for the children, the cost of which is around $700. Any amount you are able to donate will help us reach our goal of providing the children of St Benedict the Moor School with a piece of playground equipment that will last for years.
Above and Beyond!
Any funds raised that are not needed for playground improvements will be used for school supplies for the children or on one of the projects we will be working on in Chicago.
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