Students from Northwest College in Iowa and Bryan College in Dayton, TN are visiting Opelousas during their spring break. During their vacation, they will be volunteering their time and efforts to the communities children.
Hope For Opelousas, a non-profit organization that provides resources and support for the city in hosting the mission team. Amanda Kirsch and her team arrived Sunday night, and early the next morning they went to work.
"We normally partner with other ministries and we have been partnering with Opelousas for about five or six years now."
The team is revamping the two small homes HFO uses to tutor community kids after school.
"We making their facilities a little more usable and giving them the opportunity to expand their program, " said Kirsch.
While some are working in the neighborhood, others are helping in schools. Several students from South Street Elementary attend HFO after school, and members of the team are acting as teacher's aides.
"Right now, we are preparing for testing so that really helps and the teachers always enjoy having that extra help, but it's also helpful for the students because a lot of them are education majors and now they get the opportunity to work in a lower income or high-poverty schools," said principal Mary Miller.
Miranda Ficher, an Iowa mission team member agreed, "It also benefits the kids in the classroom because they get to see new people and it makes them excited to learn again."
The volunteers will be in Opelousas all week long and will continue to serve local organizations such as the Lighthouse Mission men's shelter and the New Life Center for women.