Loyola University Maryland

Center for Community Service and Justice (CCSJ)

UNITE Program Description

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UNITE is a weekend immersion experience that offers you a chance to travel into Baltimore with a small group of students and staff members to take a closer look at the realities of people who are materially poor and/or experiencing homelessness in our city.

Goals

  • To educate students on issues of hunger and homelessness and related poverty concerns for the materially poor in urban Baltimore and explore related social justice concerns
  • To serve people who are living with food insecurity and people who are experiencing homelessness or who were formerly homeless
  • To reflect on all that the group experiences in light of various beliefs, disciplines, value systems and/or spiritual perspectives that participants bring to the program
  • To build relationships with the men from the Frederick Ozanam House and others they serve during this weekend that will lead to ongoing support
  • To foster personal growth by expanding the participants' awareness and break down misconceptions through personal interaction with people living in material poverty
  • To introduce through personal experience and direct service the relationship to social justice concerns

Objectives

  • To provide a weekend live-in experience in an urban setting
  • To provide education and professional input on issues of hunger, homelessness and material poverty
  • To provide hands-on direct service opportunities
  • To provide Baltimore community exposure and personal interaction with the men from the Frederick Ozanam Transitional

Housing Program

To provide moments for individual and group reflection to make sense out of their experiences and consider what individual and group responses/actions or commitments can be taken

Experiences

  • Direct service in a meal program
  • Educational statistics on material poverty and homelessness
  • One-on-one interaction with people who have dealt with or are currently dealing with issues of hunger and homelessness
  • Group discussion and reflection activities

Retreat to the Streets

  • Special opportunity to reflect on experience using Ignatian spirituality
  • Opportunity for shared prayer in retreat-style format
  • Intentional connections between Catholic Social Teaching and Jesuit Education