Photographs by Justin D. Knight and Kerry-Ann Hamilton

Offering A Helping Hand to Others

Every year, while their classmates and millions of other college students are making their way to the beach for spring break, hundreds of Howard University students instead head off to some of the nation’s most troubled regions to offer their help.

Last year, it was New Orleans, where thousands are still recovering from the devastation of Hurricane Katrina; Chicago, where gun violence haunts the footsteps of the city’s children; Detroit, where nearly a quarter of the city’s adults are functionally illiterate, and Washington, D.C., where many young people’s dreams of a brighter future are clouded by despair.

Alternative Spring Break 2010

Students will be returning to last year’s cities. This year, they are adding another locale, Atlanta, where they will work on youth development with new mayor and Howard alumnus Kasim Reed. On March 13, they will board buses at Howard for a long, often 24-hour ride to their destination cities. Students won’t have the luxury of a hotel during that week. Instead, they will hunker down in sleeping bags and air mattresses in churches and schools. Meals are provided, but still it’s a rough week. But they do it, many of them year after year, because they want to help others.

To continue to offer a hand up to others, however, the students need your help.

WHUR 96.3 FM 12-hour Radiothon

Make Your Donation Online >>

Join WHUR 96.3 FM, Sunday, March 7, from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. for the 12-hour “A Helping Hand” Radiothon to send nearly 300 Howard University students to Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, New Orleans and across the Washington, D.C. region where they will help families wrestling with issues ranging from illiteracy, to the lingering effects of Hurricane Katrina to gun violence. This student-led effort allows everyone to help. While you may not be able to personally be in a given city, through your donation, the students can be there for you. You can drop off your donations at WHUR, 529 Bryant Street N.W.