Alternative Spring Break

New Orleans, Louisiana

Depending on the needs of the community at the time, you could be working with Camp Restore completing a variety of tasks, such as gardening and clean-up. In addition, we will spend 4 days working with Habitat for Humanity as construction volunteers. As a construction volunteer, you are the foundation of the New Orleans and Area Habitat for Humanity homeownership program, often working alongside partner families. You will build the homes from the ground up, and your workday will vary depending on the current needs at the build site. Your tasks will range, and could include foundation work, building walls, painting, flooring, etc. You could be building a new home, or building a wheelchair ramp for a housebound, elderly homeowner. Almost every part of our home construction and repair process is done by volunteers, making the no-interest mortgage possible for partner families!

UN Sustainable Development Goal 1 - No PovertyUn Sustainable Development Goal 10 - Reduced Inequalities Un Sustainable Development Goal 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities

Community Partners

Queens University Habitat for Humanity New Orleans and AreaCamp Restore

Dates of Travel

February 16, 2019 – February 24, 2019

(Note: This group travels in partnership with Queens University by bus to New Orleans.)

Participant Numbers

Western University


Queens University


Student participants



Student Team Leaders



Team Leaders



  • Learn about the rich history and culture of New Orleans.
  • Connect with Habitat partner families and learn about what homeownership means to them.
  • Explore Museum Presbytere: Hurricane Katrina Exhibit
  • Tour of Preservation Hall, a music venue meant to preserve, perpetuate, and protect New Orleans jazz
  • Free time in the French Quarter, in groups
  • Tour of the Lower 9th Ward (area most affected by Hurricane Katrina)
  • Dinner at a local restaurant

Learning Outcomes

At the end of the Alternative Spring Break 2018 program, students participating in this experience will be able to:

  • Demonstrate the ability to explore ideas, issues, and global systems from viewpoints other than their own, through reflective practice, group discussions and program activities
  • Work under conditions of ambiguity or uncertainty by engaging with community partners, community members and working as a team
  • Demonstrate an understanding of intercultural competence, sensitivity and humility by completing pre-departure workshops, activities in OWL and the ASB Reflective Practice Workbook, and engaging in the 1-2 week community-based experience
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the social complexities in New Orleans that impacted the Lower 9th Ward community pre, during and post-Hurricane Katrina
  • Describe the systemic barriers that affect the city of New Orleans and its residents

Ideal Participant

This experience does involve construction work and physical activity. If you are hard-working, team-oriented, and have a positive attitude, this is a great opportunity for you. Participants that enjoy hands-on service, road trips, and connecting with new people, are likely to find this experience a good fit.


Total cost (subject to change) – $1,100 CAD

Costs include:

  • Bus transportation to and from New Orleans
  • Insurance (health, trip cancellation)
  • Registration and Program Fees with Camp Restore and New Orleans and Area Habitat for Humanity
  • Transportation in New Orleans
  • Accommodation
  • Meals (participants will be notified of the meals that will be provided, and ones that they will need to purchase)
  • Administrative Fee (t shirt, team leader contribution, journal)

Note: ASB participants will be responsible for any souvenirs or additional food/snacks during the trip. 

Preliminary Itinerary

  • 7:00-7:30 am – wake up and cafeteria style breakfast at Camp Restore
  • 7:30-8:00 am – Travel to Habitat work site via bus
  • 8:00-8:30 am - arrive at the work site, ready to build and take instruction from our Habitat team at Morning Circle
  • 8:30 am-4:00 pm – work at Habitat site (includes lunch)
  • 4:00-4:30 pm – Travel to accommodations
  • 4:30-7:00 pm – Dinner and shower time
  • 7:00-8:30 pm – Team Reflection
  • 8:30-10:00 pm – Recreation time

Wednesday and Friday evening, you will have a choice of recreational activities in the French Quarter. 

*PLEASE NOTE – Itinerary is draft, and subject to change at any time


You will sleep in bunk beds in a dorm-like setting at Camp Restore. Sheets/sleeping bag, towels and pillow must be brought from home. 


Your meals during the program are included, and you will be responsible for some meals and snacks (to be identified). Have a look at Camp Restore-provided meals here.

Need to Know

  • This experience is based outside Canada and involves travel in the U.S.A.
  • You are responsible for ensuring that you have the required travel documents and travel visas necessary to participate in the experience.