Who We Are
Alternative Breaks (Alt Breaks) is one of the many student-led service-based programs supported by UC Berkeley Public Service Center. Since 2001, Alt Breaks has offered students opportunities to learn, serve, and take action on social justice issues during spring break.
Our motto is solidarity in action. Student participants learn about pressing social justice issues through a student-facilitated DeCal seminar, apply their knowledge and engage with community partners during a week-long immersive trip, and challenge themselves and each other to reflect critically and take action.
Alternative Breaks relies on fundraising to reduce the $375 student participant fee. Your donation will reduce participant fees, a significant barrier preventing students from engaging in this transformative experience.
Spring 2023 Service Opportunities
Explore our Student-Led Courses | Decals
The Unsung Heroes Harvesting Your Tomorrow: Exploitation, Migration, and Resilience
Economic Justice | No Place Like Home: Housing Inequity
Heal Your Planet Heal Yourself (HYPHY): Building Sustainable Legacies Rooted in the Town
Striving for Health Equity in Los Angeles
Bombiando con Puerto Rico
Immigration Isn’t a Crime: The Fight for Human Rights at the Southern Border
Your Contribution to Solidarity in Action
Student participants pay a $375 fee, to cover all food, transportation, and housing for 1 week. Nearly half of all trip budgets are allocated to food, with housing a close second.
The only source of funding for the trips comes from participant fees. We recognize the significant financial burden this places on students. We rely solely on fundraisers and private donors to offset the fees. Your contribution will go directly towards reducing participant fees across the 6 trips.
We celebrate the intersectional and interdisciplinary nature of Alternative Breaks. Over 85% of our students identify as BIPOC, more than half (59%) are first-generation college students, and nearly 75% of our students can speak two or more languages. Alt Breaks is home to participants representing 29 different majors and minors, embracing the valuable experiences of each person in the room.
The Director Team (D-Team), supports the incredible work of our Break Leaders (BLs). BLs commit to a one-year leadership position with Alternative Breaks. BLs manage all logistics associated with the course and trip including, but not limited to:
- developing a syllabus
- instructing a Decal
- cultivating community, housing, and faculty partnerships
- organizing fundraising efforts
- recruiting and retaining future leaders
Student participants apply during the Fall semester. In the spring, they enroll in a 2-unit Decal course and commit to on-the-ground service during Spring Break in California or Puerto Rico. The $375 student participant fee covers all food, housing, and transportation for 1 week.
Faculty sponsors support Break Leaders as they explore their social justice issues, bridging academics, community wisdom, evidence-based knowledge, and on-the-ground learning.
We have the privilege of serving and learning with a diverse group of stakeholders, including city governments, non-profits, and local artists. Our partnerships span across California and Puerto Rico. Areas of focus include basic needs, agriculture, sustainability, literacy, health equity, and advocacy.
Tenderloin, San Francisco
Check out our interview with Faithful Fools!
Community Partner Spotlight
Jayuya, Puerto Rico