Youth Mission Corps travels to New Orleans to help needy On Friday, June 10, the Youth Mission Corps headed out of the Midwest once again to help those in need.
This year they traveled south to New Orleans, LA, where members were split between three groups: a shelter for abused kids, working with chemically dependant male teens, and helping at a dance school and handicapped program.
These experiences truly touched the lives of everyone, not just the people the group worked with but the members themselves.
�The trip was great,� said Theresa Dendinger. �Even though the drive was really long it was worth it. Working in an orphanage and being with little kids who have had more hardships by the time they were five than I will ever have really made me grateful for what I have and really made me want to do more for people less fortunate than I am. They were so positive even though they were in a tough situation.�
Melany Porter helped out at the orphanage as well.
�Spending time with the children at Bethlehem was a life changing experience,� she said. �It makes me even more grateful for what I have than before the trip.�
Tiffiny Durham also had an inspirational experience at ARC, the handicapped persons program.
�Who could ever forget Hyman,� she said. �He was an old man at the ARC center. He did not talk to anybody. When I would talk to him, he would show the biggest smile. When I would stop he would go back to playing with his spoon.
�Then I cut him out a heart he looked around and brought it up to his chest then looked around and brought it down to his stomach and finally, when he made sure that no one was looking, he stuck it in his pocket,� she continued. �While doing this he kept the biggest smile on his face and a few hours later he pulled it out of his pocket with another big smile on his face.�
Chris Merrigan worked at Teen Challenge, the male chemical dependency program:
�It is amazing to see the healing power of God in even the toughest of situations,� he said. �With an 86 percent rate of success the work of God can be seen.�
The experience in New Orleans was not all work and no play for the Youth Mission Corps. On the way down, the group visited the Gateway Arch in Saint Louis, MO. While in New Orleans they visited the French Quarter twice, rode the trolley through the city, worshipped at a local Baptist church, and even visited the bayou and spotted a few alligators!
Though the trip was a very grueling experience (sharing accommodations with some very friendly cockroaches!) each of the members came away having learned something and having felt like they made a difference.
This year the group expanded from seven members to 17. They included:
Sarah Anderson, Rosalie and Margaret Mueller, Torrie Rasmussen, Theresa Dendinger, Stephanie and Rachel Willers, Tiffiny and Brittany Durham, Ellen Odson, Melaney Porter, Brittany Weydert, Chris Merrigan, Tom Pearson, Anna Geis, Cheyne Terrell, and Elizabeth Sedivy. Members are from Vermillion, Jackson, NE, Newcastle, NE, and Maskell, NE.
Leading the group this year were Pat and Dave Sedivy from Newcastle, NE, and Val Willers from Jackson, NE. Last year a group of seven members went out to Cortez, CO, and participated in such activities as cleaning a lady�s house, helping with a Bible school for kids, and helping to paint a house.
The group found the experience very rewarding last year and new group members felt the same this year.
The experience this year was definitely different. The much larger group made it a little more difficult to reach compromises. Still, I think that everyone learned something about the world and themselves while on the trip and came home with a greater appreciation for the things they have and the things they can do to help others.