March 28, 2011

Serving up good will

Center for Social Concern sponsors Alternative Spring Break program to expose students to pressing social issues.

Amanda Valledor, a freshman in Biomedical Engineering, and Kathleen Barros, a senior psychology major and one of the student coordinators for the food justice and poverty trip, chop tomatoes in the kitchen of the Church of the Guardian Angel during Alternative Spring Break. Photo: Will Kirk/

Ten Johns Hopkins undergraduates cooked and served dinner for area residents on Wednesday at the Church of the Guardian Angel, located in the Remington neighborhood near the Homewood campus, as part of the university’s third annual Alternative Spring Break program. The undergraduates were filling in for the regular student volunteers (away on break) at Campus Kitchens at JHU, an organization dedicated to using surplus food to provide nutritious meals for the hungry in the Baltimore area.

The Alternative Spring Break program, sponsored by the Center for Social Concern, seeks to expose Johns Hopkins students to pressing social issues impacting Baltimore residents through a combination of volunteer opportunities, panel discussions, site visits, documentary screenings and group discussions.

This year’s trips, called Breaking in Baltimore, were focused on urban health, and food justice and poverty. During the week, students broke up into groups of eight to 12 to participate in volunteer projects and learning opportunities in both Baltimore and Washington, D.C. The students lived together at Lovely Lane Church, located in Charles Village on St. Paul Street.