Habitat for Humanity “Collegiate Challenge”

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New Bern, N.C. (WNCT) – College students from across the country are viewing their spring break as a chance to give back.

This month the New Bern Habitat for Humanity is hosting its annual “Collegiate Challenge.”

The event invites colleges to help with their ongoing projects.

Schools are rotating throughout the month.

“Over these four weeks we have four different colleges coming to New Bern to help,”  said Habitat for Humanity volunteer coordinator Deedra Durocher. “All together for the month we’ll be hosting 52 students”

Over 50 students from four universities across the country will participate in the event and many students return year after year.

Alison Swartwout is a student at Case Western Reserve University and has volunteered for Habitat for Humanity several times.

Swartout said, “You get to meet so many amazing people and you get to learn a lot about communities that aren’t anything like your own.”

Durocher said the extra help Habitat for Humanity gets over these weeks makes a huge difference.

“Certainly it allows us to get further along on the build because we’ve got four full days of lots of enthusiastic and young labor,” said Durocher.

Durocher said, “students are challenging themselves to kind of go out of a comfort zone, to go to a new community to work in ways that maybe they haven’t”

When asked about why she volunteers during her spring break Swartout said, “Honestly it’s just a really great way to give back and I’ve gotten to meet so many people from my school in all different majors”

Durocher said that the charm of New Bern adds to the experience.

“I think it’s nice for the students who are coming from other parts of the county to see how welcoming and appreciative New Bern is for their willingness to come and help,” said Durocher

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