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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

3-4-24 PDF
March 4, 2024
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An inside look at Bobby B. Beacon’s insides. Illustrated by Bianca Oppedisano/ Mass Media Staff.
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Upcoming Beacons Service Trips

The Beacon Voyages for Service (BVS) is a program within the Office of Student Leadership and Community Engagement. BVS sets up programs during school breaks which gives students the opportunity to take part in service trips all over the world. BVS works to help students foster movements in social justice through on campus commitments, and hopes to provide attention to various social issues. They address many important topics and have scheduled service trips for the spring and summer of 2016 in the following areas: education and poverty, hunger and homelessness, Native American perspective, borders and immigration, rural community development, community supported agriculture, urban renewal, and women empowerment.

So this is, I want to say, the fourth year in a row where [BVS has] gone to Guatemala, where they build clay ovens for the women there and work on empowerment with indigenous women,” Kelly Dankert, a participant, says. “This is the first time we’re doing a trip to Tijuana, Mexico,” which she will be a part of, “and we’ll be flying down to San Diego and walking across the border. In the mornings we’ll be working on building a house for families dislocated by deportation and in the afternoons we’re working in a men’s deportation home.”

The team working on the Hunger and Homelessness trip have a goal of bringing awareness about these issues to the community. They will serve in pantries and shelters, gaining primary knowledge of people struggling with these conditions and issues. Participants will learn how to take action in improving lives. Other trips will work on using education as a sustainable solution to poverty, with those served being able to work for a college degree or be consistently employed. Others will help build homes and work on projects in underserved communities affected by U.S. immigration policies, or to help understand the causes of economic injustices while focusing on urban renewal in specific areas that have prevalent inequality. The trip focused on Women Empowerment will address the issue of women in poverty, all while having reduced access to healthcare and education. On that trip, they will work to close the economic gender gap, as well as to educate and empower women. Alternative groups will work to learn and teach how to create sustainable practices in rural and urban environments; other groups will focus on the causes of poverty in these areas and use eco-friendly practices to help solve this while learning more about it. During the Native American Perspective trip the participants will create an outreach program that works with those who suffer from outrageously high rates of diabetes, suicide and alcoholism. The team will help improve living conditions and help install community gardens.

“We offer these trips to help promote civic responsibility and it allows students an opportunity to learn about issues that exist around the country and the world. Many of the issues we work on in these locations are issues that exist in Boston,” says Sherrod Williams, director of the Office of Student Leadership and Community Engagement. He references homelessness and hunger as a relatable issue in multiple outlying areas, as well as close to home. He goes on to say that the BVS program works overall to help educate students and teach them “the importance of service, social justice issues, cultural immersion, while promoting the interconnectedness that exists between our communities.”

The BVS takes donations and holds fundraising events to help support their trips. Some of the upcoming fundraisers are a T-shirt sale with the graduating class in mind which is Monday, November 30 until Wednesday, December 2 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on the first floor terrace for BVS Puerto Rico; secondly, there will be a chocolate sale for BVS Guatemala from Monday, November 30 and Wednesday, December 2 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. on the Campus Center Catwalk; thirdly, there will be a Henna table Wednesday, December 9 from 3-5 p.m. and Friday, December 11 from 1-4 p.m. on the Campus Center first floor terrace for the entire BVS program; lastly, there will be an off campus End of Semester Open Mic Bash on Thursday December 3 from 7-10 p.m. at the Brookline Lunch Restaurant in Cambridge.