Wally Wallace, one of the chaparones for the trip, said the group was originally set to head to Oklahoma City for this year’s trip, but because of budget restrictions they were forced to head to a closer destination. After some phone calls with the local Habitat for Humanity, the group ended up here.
“We had to scramble,” he said. “We ended up on the phone and emailing out, contacting Habitat affiliates. So Rome was one of the first affiliates that got back to us and so they told us they could accomodate us and here we are.”
The 16-year-old sophomores were involved in painting and cleaning up a house Tuesday at 105 East 11th St., half a block off of Maple Avenue. Some, like Mike Casey, said the experience was worth it, especially since they get out of classwork for the week.
However, Casey said he also likes “the thought of helping people.”
“It just feels really good,” he said.
For Taylor Charbonneau, the work was also different because of the location.
“It’s just so different. I mean we live in New Hampshire so obviously Georgia’s a lot different,” she said.
But like the rest of her classmates, the real reward from getting out of New England for the week was the smiles of those they’re helping.
“I’ve really learned how much people appreciate it,” she said. “It’s really cool to see their reactions.”
The group will continue their stay in Rome for the rest of the week, taking a break today to tour Atlanta Later in the week they will tour Myrtle Hill Cemetery.