Alternative Winter/Spring Break

PBHA’s Alternative Spring Break program runs public service trips across the United States during Harvard's Spring Break.

Application Information:

Applications for 2021 are now OPEN. APPLY HERE

Student Director Contact Information:

Staff Contact Information:

Laurie Chroney


Fall 2020

Status: Active

Alternative Spring Break (ASB) is a program that organizes Harvard students to support communities across the US during spring break; during the fall, we’ll be recruiting both team leaders and then team volunteers — be sure to watch out for any emails! This year, due to restrictions surrounding travel, our in-person support may be limited. However, we still intend to provide online and/or local volunteering opportunities for the 2021 spring break, including working to support high school students during this difficult time. People with unique ideas for ASB are encouraged to apply as team leaders. Feel free to write to us at with any questions.

PBHA’s Alternative Winter/Spring Break program runs public service trips during Harvard’s Winter and Spring Breaks. This year, all programs will be virtual. Trips span the United States, sending students to partner with local organizations in communities and doing everything from building houses to teaching in schools. As students dedicate time to serve the communities they visit, they learn about the social, economic, and political issues affecting the community, all while forging bonds with the people there and with fellow teammates.  We are excited to announce the three 2021 winter and spring break trips.

2021 Dates: January 11th-15th


Build UP
Build UP empowers youth to lead in the solving of their own communities’ issues by gaining the education, workforce skills, and ownership. Not only does Build UP give low-income youth excellent secondary and postsecondary education, it also provides workforce development in the form of high-quality paid apprenticeships that lead to licensure in the construction and real estate sectors. At the end of six years in Build UP’s full-time program, graduates take over the deeds to the duplexes they renovate, accruing wealth as homeowners and earning income as landlords. By giving adolescent, predominantly Black teenagers the inner and external resources to bloom where they have been planted, Build UP stabilizes and reinvigorates poor inner-city communities through its graduates’ collective impact.

Community Protectors Project
The Community Protectors Project is a faith-based grassroots community organization based in northeast Alabama. Community Protectors is looking beyond charity to create a local coalition that centers anti-racist and mutual aid work in our local community. Through weekly online Bible studies based in liberation theology, local Christians are coming together to unlearn white supremacy, internalized classism, and individualism as well as explore Jesus’s teachings on inequity and community. Next, via leadership trainings and community organizing classes, participants will develop the skills and trusting relationships to respond collectively to Christ’s anti-racist and anti-poverty mandates. Finally, these leaders will convene in a local council that uses anti-racist action and mutual aid to build the beloved community here in our home.

The Woods Foundation
The Woods Foundation provides investigative services to wrongfully convicted individuals in the United States. While we prioritize individuals who have been sentenced to life without parole or death, we encourage all eligible applicants to submit their cases for review. We take on any claims of innocence–not just those that can be supported with scientific evidence. Because of the complexity of the cases we review, we often conduct full re-investigations of transcripts, witnesses and forensic evidence. After conducting a thorough investigation, we create a case summary that synthesizes the primary issues. Then, we build teams of forensic specialists, reporters and field experts, and–most importantly– identify attorneys with the right qualifications who can take on these cases full-time. In certain instances we also provide case summaries to media outlets (with permission of the subject) to raise public awareness of and garner support for wrongful convictions. At all stages after a case is accepted, our team monitors progress and serves as a resource for the wrongfully convicted individuals and their families. We recognize that overturning a conviction requires more than just a strong legal strategy, and we seek to support individuals and families every step of the way.


Participants will be required to participate actively both before and during the trip. Pre-trip activities include fundraising, team meetings, and ASB-wide training sessions at PBHA.

Please contact for more information.

Check out our ASB Trips Blog to learn more about the 2019 trips to AL, DC, NY, and PR!

Learn More

  • Habitat for Humanity


    PBHA's Harvard Habitat for Humanity connects student volunteers with build sites in Greater Boston, and runs domestic and international service trips during Harvard's winter and spring breaks.