Students Travel to Rebuild After Hurricane Harvey
In June, a total of 22 Savio students and three adults traveled for a second trip to Tivoli and Austwell, Texas on a mission to assist with clean up from the 2017 Hurricane Harvey devastation. Tivoli and Austwell are located an hour north of Corpus Christi, Texas. The students stayed in the Austwell Community Center and worked on two houses over the course of four days.
The students were guided and taken care of by Rusty and Cindy Bailey, of Rusty Cindy Ministries. Rusty Cindy Ministries is a nonprofit and that specializes in repair and rebuilding homes after natural disasters.
Math Teacher, Mrs. Katie Artzt assisted with organizing this Mission trip for the second time this year. “The students worked alongside Rusty, while Cindy collected supplies and made sure all our needs were met,” said Mrs. Artzt. “Rusty made sure the students reflected and applied their work with scripture daily. Rusty and Cindy truly made the week special for the students.”
The first home the students assisted with, was owned by a 104-year-old woman, Ms. Francesca. Ms. Francesca needed the remaining paint, scraped off her home and repainted. The students assisted diligently with preparing and painting the home walls and trim. The students also painted her deck to match the freshly painted home. The house looked beautiful when all the work was completed.
Ms. Francesca also receives Holy Communion at her home often. She instructed the students to create a beautiful garden space where she could receive Communion. The students created a lovely garden and trimmed the lawn in the front yard to make the entire space beautiful. The students placed a statue of St. Francis of Assisi in the garden, who is Ms. Francesca's favorite saint. Fr. Paulson Panakal of Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish in Tivoli, visited the garden to hold Mass for all present, and bless the garden.
The second home the students worked on, is owned by the Austwell Mayor, Mary Canales. Her home was nearly devastated from Hurricane Harvey and is still a work in progress. Students completed many tasks that required hard work and manual labor. They made much progress on the home to assist with further repairs. the students installed a window, rebuilt an outside wall, installed insulation in the attic, waterproofed and insulated the walls. An exterior wall was removed for repair, as the house electricity was rewired, and trenches were dug under the home to allow more drainage to occur in the future.
At the end of the trip, the students grew in their knowledge about home repairs, while serving the community of Austwell. They grew in fellowship and were grateful for the experience to serve others in need.
St. Dominic Savio Catholic High School is located in northwest Austin, Texas, in an active and thriving community. Savio is a college preparatory school, founded by the Diocese of Austin, to prepare young men and women to become faith-filled, visionary and inspirational leaders in service to the Church and the world. St Dominic Savio offers a faith experience that encourages students to reach their full potential as caring, conscientious, and moral servant leaders. The vision is "Forming Servant Leaders in the Image of Christ." Please contact the Director of Communications for any questions, Mrs. Cristina Almanza by email firstname.lastname@example.org.