My name is Alyssa McFadden, and I am serving as an AmeriCorps long term volunteer with CAP. What this means is I made a huge decision…to move away from my home in Philadelphia to the hills of Appalachia for an entire year! It was definitely not an easy one to make.
I originally heard about Christian Appalachian Project through a representative at my college. I attended La Salle University and graduated this past May with a degree in Communication. I was very active on campus, taking part in chapel choir, heading our university tour guides, leading organizations in my major and focusing on professional development. Most importantly, I was able to travel to Harlan County, KY three separate times to serve with a housing organization in that area. Because of my experiences with the people in that small Kentucky town, I fell in love with this place and knew that I wanted to return.
As thoughts of graduation approached, I thought a lot about my path and where I wanted to be. After much deliberation, applications and plan-making, I arrived at CAP on August 15th around midnight with my three suitcases weighing me down and great desperation to find a comfortable bed.
After just a few short weeks, I have found myself fully invested in CAP’s mission. Because of my previous service, falling in love with this new place was not difficult. It has been the people of CAP that make each day worth it. Currently, I serve in Grateful Breads Food Pantry, which is right off of Route 25 in Mt. Vernon. I would not change it for the world! When I get home each day, I am “good tired;” meaning that I am exhausted, but the work I’m doing is fulfilling. I have gotten to meet so many people and hear their stories as we shop for food in the pantry. Being a part of CAP reminds me that the world is a whole lot bigger than just my small corner of it. I look forward to continuing my journey with CAP to see what other things I can learn about myself and take with me to serve my fellow Philadelphian community.
Alyssa is a Long-Term Volunteer and AmeriCorps member. She is currently serving in Rockcastle County and living in the Rockcastle House. If you want to learn more about volunteering email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Top picture: Alyssa enjoying some of the beautiful views in Kentucky. Bottom picture: Alyssa and other Long-Term volunteers exploring Kentucky on their weekend.