Goshen News, Goshen, IN

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March 2, 2014

GC students give up their spring breaks to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity

Goshen College students give up spring breaks to volunteer

GOSHEN — While many college students spend their spring break visiting warmer climates, some local students volunteer in the community.

A handful of Goshen College students helped build a home for Elkhart County Habitat for Humanity last week during their spring break.

Josue De La Rosa, a freshman from Bristol, said he got involved to help make up for a service project he missed earlier in the year.

“They did something in school, and it was a time that didn’t work for me so I decided to come here,” he said. “It’s fine, it’s not like I was doing anything too much (for spring break). It’s not as bad as I thought it would be, it’s pretty good.”

De La Rosa said he had only done some construction work with his father around their home, but felt good contributing to the program that provides low-cost housing for people who would otherwise not be able to afford a newly-built home.

“I think it’s a good idea and definitely good for people who are struggling,” De La Rosa said. “It makes me feel like I’m giving back in some way.”

Another freshman, Joanlier Hernandez, from Elkhart, said that while he was at first down about giving up time on his break, he changed his mind when he got to work and learned what the project was for.

“At first I wasn’t sure what I had to do, so I was just kind of bummed out because I had to come real early,” Hernandez said. “But they told me that it’s for a house to help some people out to make it more affordable. I feel good because I’m helping out and contributing toward society.”

The students worked alongside Habitat staff that check the work and provide a guiding hand to inexperienced builders.

According to Elkhart County Habitat, the college has helped build during spring break in recent years.

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Last weekend (July 12) the Goshen Parks Department held its Kid’s Try-athlon to promote childhood fitness and this week (July 18) the new bicycle trail is open to the fairgrounds in Goshen, offering residents a healthy way to get to the annual agriculture exposition. Have you joined the local fitness movement?

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