Today we had an all day site visit to the Rockaways to examine Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts. We met with volunteers from a number of organizations and some Americorps folks, plus a local FEMA official and two women who live in the area and whose houses were rendered uninhabitable by flooding, mold, and other damage. I wish that the students had maybe had a chance to see more visual signs of damage, but it evolved into a really great discussion. The best part came as the women told their stories of loss and struggle, their experience of the relief volunteers, and their difficulty in getting money back from FEMA. After the discussion, we suited up the students (because they didn’t bring painting clothes for their 4-month trip around the world). Over the next three hours we painted the interior of the church. It’s amazing what a big group can do. Then I headed to the airport for my last weekend in Boston before we head out to the world.