While summer is often a time for students to vacation and take time to relax, 10 Duquesne students recently participated in Spiritan Campus Ministry’s Cross-Cultural Mission Experience (CCME) trip to the Dominican Republic, where they helped to operate a day camp for 80 children.
The weeklong trip marked a decade since Duquesne staff and students first traveled to the Dominican Republic to serve and work with the Rev. Don McEachin, C.C.Sp., pastor to the Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza (Our Lady of Hope) Parish, where the annual camp is held.
Referred to by the locals there as “Camp Duquesne,” the day camp is a collaborative effort by Duquesne students and Dominican teens, who work through language barriers and logistics to create a positive mentoring experience for local youth. Activities for the week included arts and crafts, sports, dance, story time and a pool day with the young campers.
Over the past decade, Duquesne students have expressed the importance of being able to build and foster relationships with members of the Dominican community. In recent years, students have expanded their outreach through a student crowdfunding campaign held before the trip. The more than $2,000 that was raised this year helped provide medical supplies and support home repair expenses for the area’s elderly and the sick. Students were able to visit the recipients of the funding to see firsthand the impact of their efforts.