ServeUP: Disaster Relief in Houston

“Watching upperclassmen lead while working helped me learn leadership skills, and the work itself taught me about the importance of teamwork (since we definitely got so much done when everyone was working).”

Destination: Houston, Texas

Trip Organizers: Danielle D’Oliveira ‘19 ([email protected]) & Caleb Miaw ‘11 ([email protected])

The Experience

In this Break Out Trip, fifteen students went to Houston, Texas to aid in disaster relief after Hurricane Harvey devastated homes on the Gulf Coast. They helped gut homes, installed insulation and drywall, and applied plaster in preparation for painting. Students also participated in Community Time which allowed them to discuss loss and healing and the Christian faith. They were also able to see, firsthand, Harvey’s direct impact on various neighborhoods of Houston and the city infrastructure.

Participant Quotes

  • “I feel as though can learn something more personal and deeper from experience/work than in academic learning where the purpose is to lead you to a certain point. I enjoyed the work immensely. I felt as though I was putting my efforts into something worthy and I could see the product of my work. At Williams, it is sometimes difficult to see where your hard work and energy are going to.”
  • “I am proud of the work ServeUP did. It felt tangible and seeing the house go from a structural skeleton to becoming a walled house was dope.  Experience is the example we always look for in abstract concepts for learning.”
  • “I think experience is very valid and my time spent on this Breakout Trip was used for thoughtfully meeting other people and well as actively engaging with new people and their needs.”