“There is so much more to these clients than just numbers, and they have gained a second family that will help them build up their home again, physically, emotionally, and mentally.” ASB ’17, Day 1: Sabrina Cordova & Joseph Pacifico

Sabrina Cordova ’20, Health Science, Pleasantville Campus

Day one of Alternative Spring Break 2017 is complete! Pace PLV and Pace NYC met up for the first time in person to enjoy a delicious lunch at Cross Bay Diner. We then visited the Friends of Rockaway Warehouse where we learned more about the corporation and their goals as a non-profit organization. The team at Friends of Rockaway described how the warehouse keeps track of their inventory, how they keep a record of what houses are being remodeled and which families are eligible for a new house. The organization now goes by SBP. SBP works with families directly and treats them like one of their own family members. Unlike other organizations, SBP refers to the families by their names and addresses rather than a simple number. This is their way of showing that there is so much more to these clients than just numbers and that they have gained a second family that will help them build up their home again, physically, emotionally, and mentally. So far, SBP has given 7 families a home again this year already! Last year (2016) they built up to about 74 homes and 75 homes in 2015! I can’t wait to volunteer because I know that I will be able to make a difference! After leaving the warehouse, my peers and I had some free time before checking into the Surfside Motel, so we visited Rockaway Beach. It is within walking distance and it is beautiful, despite the cold! This was my favorite moment of the day because I had the chance to bond with my peers. New York is expecting a massive snowstorm, so we won’t be volunteering until Wednesday. I am looking forward to what the rest of ASB will have to offer!

Joseph Pacifico ’19, Business Economics, NYC Campus

Day 1 was a very humbling experience so far. Zach from SBP (or Friends of Rockaway) informed us of his team’s operations here in NYC post Hurricane Sandy. He really put everything into perspective for us. The fact that four years later, thousands of families are still feeling the impact of the hurricane is mind-blowing. Zach took us through a tour of their office/warehouse/area of operations and showed us the work they are doing every week. Most offices don’t live with their construction equipment, but in this way they are constantly reminded as soon as they walk in the door what their mission in NYC is. SBP does great work every year; helping build around 75 homes a year is a tremendous undertaking when relying on volunteers for the most part. And unlike other programs like Build it Back, SBP is actually doing work to help people instead of just saying they will help, while keeping families on an endless waitlist. They make sure that their sub-contractors are reliable and that they finish their projects in a timely manner. I look forward to helping the Dumont and the Dow homes this week and reaching that goal of 70+ houses. This will be an unforgettable experience for me and the rest of the ASB group. #PaceASB2017