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Pepperdine University

Project Serve Sites 2020

Project Serve 2020 is the 19th year in a row Pepperdine students will choose to serve on spring break. This year, once again, we are excited to send students to communities across the United States and internationally to connect and to learn. 

It is easy to want to go to beautiful places. However, we encourage you to focus on the work being done by our carefully selected partners. Please read the descriptions of each site to determine which ones may be the best fit for you.

 Boys & Girls Club Apache Nation

Mentoring Youth in San Carlos, Arizona

Project Serve teams have been partnering with the Boys & Girls Club of the San Carlos Apache Tribe for many years now. The San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation in southeastern Arizona was established in 1871 as a sovereign reservation for the Chiricahua Apache tribe. Currently, a devastating 60% of the people within this community live below the poverty line. Team members will have the opportunity to experience a rich and fascinating culture firsthand in a wide variety of meaningful ways. Examples of potential projects include cleaning and organizing the Boys and Girls Club facility, painting murals, facilitating after school projects, and leading seminars for local high school students about the college application process. The team will stay at the Boys & Girls Club.

Fundraising goal: $355

 Eye on the Rainforest

Environmental Stability in Puerto Rico

We will be returning to work with Eye on the Rainforest located in Las Casas de la Selva, Puerto Rico. This team will be working alongside the Tropic Ventures Sustainable Forestry & Rainforest Enrichment Project. Tasks can include a range of activities, including painting, pruning, tree identification and tagging, and carpentry. You will also learn about the efforts the people of Puerto Rico are taking to help their country with conservation efforts. In addition to sustainability efforts, students may have the opportunity to continue the ongoing efforts of hurricane recovery.

Fundraising Goal: $1,205

 Monteverde Institute

Environmental Stability and Community Development in Costa Rica

The Monteverde Institute programs are based on the belief that to achieve sustainability—both locally and globally—a combination of environmental, social, cultural, economic, and technological factors must be carefully considered. To that end, MVI fosters a synergistic approach that blends international experiences, applied research, and community engagement. Participate in a weeklong homestay program where you engage personally with locals who are engaged in sustaining the largest rainforest in North America while supporting the efforts of locals to thrive economically.

Fundraising Goal: $1405

 Rebuilding Hope in New Orleans

Rebuilding Efforts in New Orleans, Louisiana

Rebuilding Hope in New Orleans (RHINO) is a Christian nonprofit that was started after Hurricane Katrina devastated the city. Since then, RHINO has partnered with other non profits around New Orleans to help make the city what it is today. However, the city can still use your help! While in NOLA, you will be partnering with either Habitat for Humanity or Rebuilding Together. These organizations help with rebuilding homes that have been destroyed and neglected due to natural disasters or a lack of funding. Students will be assisting with the rebuilding however the organization sees fit, which can include tasks such as painting, cleaning, tiling, and drywalling. 

Fundraising Goal: $805


Healthcare Support in Memphis, Tennessee

Serve901 is a nonprofit organization in Memphis, Tennessee that works with nonprofits around the city to put together service trips for different groups. While in Memphis, you will be focusing on healthcare and get the chance to work with nonprofits in the area. You will also get the opportunity to learn about the realities of life in Memphis, visit the National Civil Rights Museum, and get a chance to explore the city. Please be aware that we will not be providing healthcare services but will likely be supporting organizations providing access to community members in need.

Fundraising Goal: $755


Education in New York, New York

With a population of just over 19 million, 14.2% of New Yorkers have lived below the poverty line since 2009. This team will work with ShilohNYC , a nonprofit Christian organization dedicated to equipping at-risk youth with the tools to build hope. Team members will become a part of a community that will teach, mentor, and befriend the youth to promote their physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual growth. The team will partner with a public school in the South Bronx where you will tutor children and support teachers throughout the school week with small projects or reading/math centers. Not only will the team members impact the students, they will also provide much needed support and encouragement to teachers who are often over-worked, under-paid and under-appreciated. They will help to strengthen the bond of the school, the teachers and students building a better community. Lodging is within the community of the South Bronx.

As this is a domestic service opportunity we encourage you to consider a return trip and supporting the ShilohNYC mission be it through a return trip or summer work at the camp that is run for the same children of the South Bronx community. Priority will be given to students who are returning or plan on returning as indicated by their applications.

Fundraising Goal: $755

 Story International

Education Access in Huehuetenango, Guatemala

Guatemala ranks in the lower 50% in GDP per capita in the world with an estimated 59% of its population below the poverty line (2018). Story International strives to meet the education needs in Huehuetenango with a special emphasis on the orphans and single parent families in the community. Students will split their time between the children's homes and schools onsite, offering assistance to teachers and providing ways to support the needs of the students. In addition, Pepperdine students might help with general repair and rehabilitation of facilities.

Fundraising Goal: $1405

 Surfing The Nations

Hunger and Homelessness in O'ahu, Hawai'i

At Surfing the Nations (STN) the motto is "Surfers Giving Back." Surfers lead the way, but anyone who is willing and able is encouraged to join. Their mission is to see lives changed inside and outside of the organization with a focus on hunger and homelessness and at-risk youth. Hawaii, the state with the 3rd highest rate of homelessness, has 10.4% of its residents living in poverty and 14% experiencing food insecurity. STN is doing remarkable work in Wahiawa to give hope to those in need. Team members will participate by joining STN staff members in worship and prayer as they prepare for sorting donated goods, rehabilitating a lake, and distributing food to the needy and homeless.

Fundraising Goal: $755

 The Painted Turtle

Camp Counselor in Lake Hughes, California

All children deserve a chance to be a kid at camp. The Painted Turtle makes sure this happens through their incredible campgrounds in Lake Hughes north of Los Angeles. Kids with serious medical conditions can come to The Painted Turtle to forget about what they are going through and just be kids. With top notch medical facilities and personnel, the Project Serve team can work with the campers on arts and crafts, fishing, and other traditional camp activities.

This opportunity is only a three-and-a-half-day commitment!
Applications are open to students who are not on the Malibu campus for fall as well as though who are.

Fundraising Goal: $35

 Union Gospel Mission

Hunger and Homelessness in Seattle, Washington

Made famous by its music and coffee, Seattle is a city rich in cultural diversity. However, many don't recognize that Washington's King County has up to 8,000 homeless people on any given night. Of those served by food banks in Seattle, 25% are families with children.

The team will work with Union Gospel Mission, an organization providing programs for drug recovery, transitional housing, educational and career resources. Their mission is "To serve, rescue, and transform those in greatest need through the grace of Jesus Christ." The team will prepare and serve meals and help around the facility as needed.

Fundraising Goal: $455

 Urban Promise

Youth Outreach in Camden, New Jersey

Urban Promise is a nonprofit in Camden, New Jersey that works to equip the youth of the community with the necessary tools for success. Through after-school programs, life management, summer camps, job training, and other opportunities, Urban Promise has been a staple of the community since 1988. While there, your team may be providing these services and supporting the community as they see fit. You will also be building connections with the local community and the nonprofit. Projects can include helping with the after-school program and general facility upkeep.

Fundraising Goal: $755