While some of us wait until the last minute to complete our service hours, senior Natalie Campbell got a jump on things before the school year even started. Natalie, along with her friend’s Church group, ventured to Hurley, Virginia, a community in the Appalachian Mountains, on a two week long mission trip over the summer. The group gave their services to the secluded residents of Hurley who desperately need assistance with construction projects and community development.
“We do whatever work needs to be done,” said Natalie, “we build decks, fix roofing, whatever the community needs.”
The volunteers worked tirelessly to help the residents and made a few friends along the way; “You’re completely cut off from the world- there’s no cell signal- so you’re pretty much forced to make friends with the people around you,” said Campbell, recalling the many jokes and fun times she shared with her friends on the trip.
Natalie’s childhood friend Julianne ultimately convinced her to do mission work with Glenmar United Methodist Church, Julianne’s parish, three years ago and Natalie has been hooked ever since. The sailor spent many of her past spring breaks and summers on mission trips all over the eastern United States but she says trips to Hurley, Virginia are her favorite.
“I’ve made such strong connections with the residents of Hurley and with the group I work with. You see God in everyone. It’s such an awesome experience,” said Campbell.
Natalie says the mission trips are the highlight of her year and she can’t wait to go back in 2014. The group is always looking for more volunteers to travel with them and Natalie hopes more people will join and experience all the joy and satisfaction that comes from the mission trips.
Conor McEwan ‘14