Students spend spring break volunteering

By Tyler Profilet - bio | email

It's March, so that means it's spring break for a lot of high schools.

While some students head to the beach, some are heading for the Ozarks to help those in need.

A group of high school students from Incarnate Word Academy in St. Louis is spending their spring break in Ellington, volunteering at Whole Kids Outreach.

This week, they've helped clean up tornado damage, fixed up homes, and worked with local kids.

And they say it's the perfect way to spend spring break.

Incarnate Word Academy senior Riley Dean said it was a no brainer.

Instead of relaxing with her friends on spring break, she decided to head to Ellsinore with some underclassmen and volunteer in one of the poorest parts of the  state.

"This is what I like to do. This is fun. This is spring break for me," she said.

While picking up trash in front of a home in Centerville may not seem like the ideal spring break, this group of girls say they wouldn't have it any other way.

"Because you get to see the impact you make and it makes you want to come back again and do even more," said sophomore Alicia McCabe.

"It's been a blast. It's been a great experience. I'll definitely remember this forever," added sophomore Monica Wilson.

On this day, the girls are helping clean up a house  in Centerville that is home to 12 people.

They say they've never seen poverty like they have in the area.

"A lot of people don't have the things we do," McCabe said.  "And we get to help people change their lives and work with them."

"A lot of them are still happy and they still volunteer their time to help others. So even though the don't have a lot, they don't need a lot to be happy," said Wilson.

And while their friends sunbathe on the beach, these girls say volunteering their break is the way to go.

"Yeah, this is my spring break and I like it," said Dean.

The girls are volunteering through Whole Kids Outreach in Ellington.

The organization works with thousands of families in six counties in southeast Missouri.

If you would like to volunteer with WKO, visit them here.

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