Professional Development

Resources for Community Organizations

Alternative Breaks 101 Break Away 101

Sample Student Leader Materials

Want to learn more about what students are expecting of Community Organizations?  These resources will give you a better sense of the tools schools are using to prepare trip leaders to communicate with community organizations and develop projects and partnerships.

Alternative Break Checklist for Student Leaders Rubric for Assessing Community Organization Relationships Essential Questions for your Community Organization Sample Project Plan - College of William & Mary

Sample Community Organization Materials

In-Person Trainings

Fall 2018 | Atlanta-area Organization Training

Building off the collaboration and training started at the fall 2017 gathering, organizations who work with volunteer groups are invited to join Break Away for a full-day training and community building opportunity.  The event will be held on the Georgia State University Campus and scholarships will be made available.  In the coming months, additional information will be shared here and with our networks via email.  To receive additional information as it becomes available, contact us and we'll add you to the list!

November 1, 2017 | Atlanta Community Gathering

Organizations who work with volunteer groups in the greater Atlanta area joined Break Away and the National Park Service Southeast Region for a half-day of professional development, networking, and collaboration.  You can view the agenda and submit feedback or contact us with questions!

National Conference Calls

April 27, 2018 | Compelling Branding & Marketing for Volunteer Recruitment

On this call, we talked about the core components of quality branding and utilizing those in order to build a culture that recruits quality volunteers and garners widespread support. This call features Emma Cofer of Lippincott and the AB@UCSD student Co-Coordinators.

Listen to the call recording and follow along with the presentation materials.

October 24, 2017 | Contextualizing Service through Education, Orientation, and Training

On this call, we discuss the ways in which community organizations can support students' development of the educational framework for an alternative break.  Essentially - how can community organizations best support students in learning more about the work organization does, your clients or constituents, and the projects volunteers work on in order to help create life-long learners and advocates for your organization.

This call features David Tana from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, 2016 Break Away Community Partner of the Year.

Listen to the partial call recording (and see what you missed!) and follow along with the presentation materials.

January 12, 2017 | Focusing on Community Impact in Alternative Breaks

This call addresses the myriad ways community organizations and alternative break programs are centering the impact volunteerism has on communities, not only student volunteers.

This call features Heather Pulley from Harvest Farm and Meghan Foley from the College of William & Mary.

Listen to the call recording and follow along with the presentation materials.

February 2016 | Year-round Involvement with Alternative Breaks

On this call, we discuss the unique opportunities alternative break groups represent for your organization; ways to deepen the volunteer experience with education, orientation, and training; and the best methods for staying in communication with volunteer groups year-round.

This call features Tony Ward from the Hiwassee River Watershed Coalition and Misty Newman from the alternative breaks program at James Madison University.

Listen to the call recording and follow along with the presentation materials.

May 2015 | Alternative Breaks and the National Park Service

This call introduced National Park units to alternative breaks and how to utilize these dedicated students in volunteer and civic-engagement programs.  This call specifically addresses how these volunteers are are ready to answer A Call to Action – helping to develop life-long connections to the parks.

This call features NPS Director Jon Jarvis and Ranger Todd Nelson, Volunteer Coordinator for Grand Canyon National Park.

Listen to the call recording and check out this video for further context.

February 2015 | Reorientation: Turning Alternative Break Volunteers into Advocates and Organizers

This call introduced community organizations to the alternative breaks model, focusing on the concept of Reorientation – the process by which individuals transfer the lessons learned on-break by reorganizing into communities of action on campus and in their lives.

This call features Bianca Vazquez of the Steinbruck Center.

Listen to the call recording and follow along with the presentation materials.

December 2014 | Best Practices for Working with Alternative Break Programs

This call is focused on providing community partners and intermediary organizations with a better understanding of the alternative break model and how to work with our volunteers. We share tools and resources such as work plans, rubrics, and impact stories to both plan and assess alternative break projects with community partners. 

This call features Break Away Programs Directors Anna Dausman and Robert Burack.

Listen to the call recording and follow along with the presentation materials.

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