Ten students from the Catholic Campus Ministry Center at Stony Brook University travelled to Wyoming County in West Virginia for a Spring Break Mission Trip March 10-17.
A part of the Appalachia region, Wyoming County is a rural area of more than 500 square miles. Over 30% of households in the County have an annual income of less than $20,000 and less than 9% of residents have a college degree.
Joanne Buonocore, the Center’s Minister, led the students to the location and managed a partnership with Appalachia Service Project, whose goal is to repair and rebuild substandard housing in Central Appalachia. The students received a job of renovating some parts of a trailer.
During the first part of the week, students worked through freezing rain and snow as they began their projects. Inside the house, students installed drywall, including the required taping, spackling and sanding. They primed and painted the walls and learned how to replace soffits to keep the rain and pests out of the house. Another successful project was to build a porch from concept to completion.
“Our service trips are a way of putting our faith into action and showing love for those who may feel forgotten, left out, or on the margins of society,” said Joanne. “There is an element of struggle and uncertainty inherent in any mission trip, and that fosters deeper friendships and helps create memories for our students. I am so proud of each and everyone one of them!”
The Campus Ministry has an Interfaith Center on the fifth floor of the Melville Library. This was the Ministry’s fifth consecutive Spring Break Mission Trip for Stony Brook students.
— Cohen Miles-Rath, Community Relations