Dear Team Nashville,

Words can not express how thankful I am to have spent this past week with you goons. We had an incredible journey in Nashville that surpassed my expectations. No one service trip is alike, but I hope I have the opportunity to experience something like that again. There was never a dull moment with you girls. I think we are the funniest people I know, but that may be a little bias.

Since it was my first time leading an alternative break trip, I was anxious that something would go wrong or that people would not enjoy their time. Everyone wants to feel like they made a difference when they participate in a service event or trip, but sometimes that feeling never comes. I am grateful that we had multiple service expeditions throughout our time together and that I experienced that feeling by day two. I really hope you girls understand how much of a difference you truly made as well.

You all added something special to the group and that is what made our trip so memorable and successful. You worked hard at every task we were assigned, no matter how insignificant it seemed. The time flew by in what seemed like a millisecond and I wish that was not the case. There was so much going on all week and I think that was why I slept so little(and probably because of Bananagrams). Anyone who thinks that service encompasses only one thing clearly is not doing service right. Serving others encompasses compassion, adventure, action, change, etc. Service is a two-way street: the people we met in our time in Nashville gave us the best souvenir of all by sharing their stories with us. We gave a lot this week, but I think we gained more.

Each of your perspectives on the situations and problems we encountered on our trip helped mold my perspective. Plus, I do not think I will ever be with a group of people who love fanny packs as much as I do again in my lifetime. I hope to see you all wearing them again soon.

Service changes things; both internally and externally. Please continue to seek out the needs of others and push to make a difference. You all have the potential to do many great things and I hope you pursue the things that make you happy.

Here is to more adventures, hopefully with some friends and familiar faces, but also with new people with different perspectives. The more you know the more you can help. Sometimes people just need someone to listen. It may not feel like much, but it may be the world to them.

Good luck on your journeys.

Love,

A leader