Appa Volunteers — more commonly called “Appa” — is a service-immersion program committed to working with the poor and marginalized in the United States. The heart of our work is spent in community, when we travel to 32 different cities and towns during spring break, living in solidarity alongside the families that we commit to serve.

What We Do

Learn, through discussion and reflection, about the societal realities in the United States that leave some marginalized.

Consider how our faith asks us to respond to the social injustices that create entrenched poverty.

Foster a commitment to service throughout the year.

Embrace the Gospel’s call to “love one another.”

Appa Volunteers is an alternative spring break service-immersion program committed to working alongside underserved populations in the United States. More than 400 students travel coast-to-coast with us each year, encountering community and service in both urban areas (New Orleans, Detroit, etc.) and rural areas (throughout the South and the Appalachian regions).

We meet biweekly throughout the school year to learn about the structural and social realities that leave some people marginalized, and we draw on Boston College’s Jesuit tradition in considering how faith might ask us to respond to social injustices. 

Joining Appa is as easy as showing up. We have no application process; any student who wants to participate can. We simply ask that you complete our registration form and commit to the following requirements:

Registering for Appa

Terms & Conditions: All students participating in Appa must submit basic registration information and the program’s terms and conditions form online. Students will be directed to a secure site to submit their $100 program fee (“dues”) after completing the above link.

Participation and Attendance

Biweekly Formation Meetings: We meet every other Sunday from 5 - 6:15 p.m. in Eagles Nest starting on October 6. Our hope is that each meeting provides an opportunity for members to experience our “love, learn, serve” mission in new ways.

Meeting Attendance: Attendance at meetings is mandatory. Members who cannot make a meeting should e-mail appalachia@bc.edu ahead of time to alert us to their absence. Two unexcused absences will result in a student’s dismissal from the program and a forfeiture of paid dues.

Calendar: Add the Appa Volunteers calendar to your Google Calendar.

Finances and Fundraising

Program Fee: $100, which includes an Appa T-shirt, is due with your signed terms and conditions. This fee can be paid online, via credit card. Participants can also pay in cash or check.

Letter Campaign: Appa Volunteers is entirely donor-supported, which means we rely on the generosity of donors to support our work on-campus and across the country. Using a downloadable template, volunteers are expected to print, personally address, and sign at least 10 letters seeking financial support from family, friends, past employers, teachers, a local parish, etc. Bring the letters, along with the names and addresses of 10 individuals, to our November 17 general meeting. We will provide you with stamped envelopes, which you will address and submit at the meeting.

Raffle: Students are responsible for selling $200 worth of raffle tickets by January 26. You can download and print the tickets in December 2019. Please make sure all writing is clear and legible. You can submit raffle payment via cash, check (payable to Boston College), or credit card. To pay via credit card:

  1. Visit bc.edu/ummstpm
  2. Log in with BC username and password via Sign in to My Account button in the upper right hand corner
  3. Under the list of UMM Programs You Have Been Accepted Into, click the red Make Payment button on the Appa Volunteers line
  4. On this page you can submit your $100 program fee and/or your raffle contribution. Enter the amount you would like to pay in the respective Payment Amount field and click Make Payment
  5. You will be redirected to the secure CashNet page where you can submit your payment information. You will receive an email confirming your successful payment.

Timeline 2019-2020

  • October 6: Appa Orientation
  • October 20: Formation Meeting
  • November 3: Formation Meeting, Terms and Conditions Due
  • November 17: Formation Meeting, Letters Due
  • December 8: Formation Meeting
  • January 20: Appa Spring Orientation (for those who studied abroad)
  • January 26: Formation Meeting, Raffle Due
  • February 9: Formation Meeting
  • February 23: Formation Meeting
  • February 28: Appa Send-Off Liturgy
  • March 1-6: Appa Spring Break!
  • March 23: Unpacking Appa Meeting

To save these dates in your calendar, make sure to add the Appa Volunteers Google calendar!

Appa Volunteers is animated by the work of 64 student leaders in all facets of the program.

The following leadership positions are available: 

  • Trip Leaders (TLs) are extensively trained on servant leadership and service immersion practices. 2 TLs are assigned to each site, and commit to facilitate respectful, safe, and meaningful experiences for participants and community partners. 

  • Appa Council Members are 12 TLs that serve as the program’s executive leadership on our Appa Council. They work in one of three committees: Fundraising, Formation, or Transportation. 

  • Appa Head Coordinators are three students who serve as “leaders of leaders” in Appa’s community of Trip Leaders and participants. They work closely with the Appa Campus Minister and Graduate Assistants and dedicate their time overseeing all Appa Council committees and much of the behind-the-scenes work that goes into Appa. 
     

Applications for leadership positions are released on March 22, 2020. Selections will made by the end of April.

Email
appalachia@bc.edu

Appa Hours
Monday - Thursday: 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Carney 371

Mailing Address
Boston College
Campus Ministry: Appa Volunteers / McElroy 233
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA  02467

Program Director
Kelly Hughes
McElroy 122
kelly.hughes@bc.edu
617-552-8307

Graduate Assistants
Ally Liedtke
McElroy 233
allison.liedtke@bc.edu

Claire Soupene
McElroy 233
claire.soupene@bc.edu