PLIA in a pandemic

Anna De Oliveira — Staff Writer

In a non-pandemic year Dordt programs like PLIA and AMOR provide students with the opportunity to serve communities around the country and world. PLIA sends students to partner with outreach programs around North America. AMOR focuses on serving internationally in countries like Guatemala, Nepal, Haiti, and Cambodia.

This year, however, a lot has changed due to the number of travel restrictions.

AMOR is run by Pastor Sam Ashmore and Professor Mary Beth Pollema, and is usually offered to education and project management majors. The initial plan for AMOR 2021 was a trip to Belize in order to serve as educators in a local Presbyterian school. 

The Belize AMOR trip had to be canceled on March 3 due to COVID-19 restrictions and travel insurance prices.

“I was disappointed when I received the email that the trip was not happening, it makes sense, but I hope to go next year,” said sophomore Cobi van Slegeren.

Since AMOR will not be happing this year, students are encouraged to serve through PLIA, which will be hosting a slightly modified version of their usual trips.

PLIA 2021 will focus on serving Dordt’s surrounding communities. The main goal is to serve Sioux County and encourage the students to work with their peers. This year, students will head out in the morning and return in the late afternoon for a small worship time in the evening.

This year PLIA will be led by sophomore Isaiah deRegt and senior Sarah Holmberg. They will also work with senior Annika Brands who is running the community outreach program for Dordt this year. They’ve selected five or six projects so far to work on during the program.

“I love PLIA because it gave me a chance to meet new people and to grow spiritually. I also think that this is a great way to spend spring break; we will not have that this year unfortunately, but it is still a great way to grow alongside your peers, “ said deRegt.

PLIA will have posters around campus with a QR code that allows you to sign up to participate, as well as a table will be set up in the Grille area so students can learn more. They can also be found online at @du_plia.

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