Experience living out your Catholic faith at Group Catholic Workcamps. Group Catholic Workcamps is planned and led by trained Catholic youth ministry professionals. All programming is designed to connect your service and justice activities to your relationship with Jesus. Develop a deeper love for your catholic faith by getting outside of your comfort zone and encountering Jesus through meaning home repair and interactive worship, prayer, and liturgy. You’ll be amazed how much transformation happens in one week!
Spending a week in Grand Rapids will remind you of why Michigan is called the Great Lake State. The city sits on the Grand River and is only 25 miles east of Lake Michigan. Home of the internationally renowned Art Prize, the community is rich in art and culture with sculptures and museums throughout the city. Grand Rapids offers a big city feeling with the warmth of a small town.
Even though it’s easy to see the beauty of Grand Rapids, the city did not survive the nation’s recession untouched. Living in one of the cities hit hardest by the economic problems, the people of Grand Rapids have struggled through failed industries and unemployment.
There is a shortage of affordable housing and in comparison, to the other areas in town, there is a lack of investment in the lower income neighborhoods.
Participants will stay in an *air-conditioned facility (no a/c in sleeping rooms) with open and private showers. Everyone will be sleeping on floors, gender-separate so bring your air-mattresses too. *Subject to change.
You’ll be working throughout the city to do various home repairs projects for residents. At the Grand Rapids, MI Catholic Workcamp, your group will demonstrate Jesus’ love and compassion in tangible ways, serving real people in need while working on projects like…
A group of people experienced with Group Workcamps, including the Diocese of Grand Rapids, have come together in Grand Rapids to help those most in need in terms of housing for residents. Their goal is to make Grand Rapids the best place it can be for the community and the people.
A "typical" day at a Group Catholic Workcamp involves serving others, "God Sightings," daily devotions, and interactive worship programs. Your schedule will look similar to this:
Every year, the Group Mission Trips team dedicates extensive time and energy to create a new Jesus-centered program experience through morning and evening programs, crew devotions, and youth group devotions (included in participant handbooks). Programs are designed so that you don't just look to a stage, but look to Jesus.
Our well-trained staff leads programs daily. Plus, you and your youth have the opportunity to serve by leading parts of each worship program through music, drama, Scripture reading, and other hands-on experiences. Feel free to bring guitars, drums, harmonicas, banjos, and great voices!
In 2022 Group Mission Trips will be calling everyone to Go Serve. On each trip, we will focus on God’s call on us to serve in freedom. We will discover that Jesus is the reason we serve. We will learn that serving is a way to give praise to God. We will challenge ourselves to serve even when no one notices. We will remember that the ultimate example of service is Jesus’ humility and willingness to die for us. And we will discover that God blesses us when we serve.
Join us for next summer and answer the call – Go Serve!
There is a mall in Grandville, River Town Crossings, that includes a movie theater and lots of dining options. Grandville is about 15 minutes from Grand Rapids, which is about 40 minutes away from Lake Michigan. Also located about an hour and a half away is Michigan's Adventure amusement and water park.
If you would rather stay a bit closer to Grand Rapids, check out The Mitten Brewing Company which is said to have the best specialty pizza around. It is a vintage baseball-themed microbrewery/pizzeria with a focus on community involvement and charitable giving. It is also located in one of the city’s Victorian masterpieces that they renovated and restored to its former glory.
Our goal is do our best to ensure the safety of participants, local partners, and members of the communities we serve. We are in contact with our partners in each community and working to make sure we provide the safest environment and follow all local guidelines when it comes time for camp next summer. As we get more specific details and plans, we will be sure to share them with you and your group. In the meantime, you may refer to this list of precautions we are currently evaluating: COVID-19 Precautions
Jr/Sr High trips: Must be at least 12 years old OR entering the 7th grade in the fall of the same year as your trip.
Sr High trips: Must be at least 14 years old OR entering the 9th grade in the fall of the same year as your trip..
We normally split groups up into work crews. But, we are willing to work with your group on how you’d like to split into crews. Our work crews are made up of six people with usually one or two adults and four or five youth--typically each person from a different church. If you’d like to have your youth meet new friends and develop friendships outside of your youth group, then allow us to split up your group. If you have specific church safety rules that require your group to be together, we are more than happy to arrange that for your group as well. Our top priority is to partner with you to arrange the best experience for your youth group and help you meet your ministry goals.
Yes, you must have 1 adult (21 years of age or older) for every 5 youth (20 years of age and under). If both boys and girls are registered in your group, you must have at least one male adult and one female adult registered for supervision at night.
Yes, Group Mission Trips requires all participants 18 years of age or older be screened and background checked by their church prior to attending.
A "typical" day at Group Workcamp involves serving others, "God Sightings," daily devotions, and interactive worship programs. Your schedule will look similar to this:
Check-in: Sunday between 12-2 p.m.
3 p.m First program, followed by the Adult Meeting
5 p.m. Dinner
7 p.m. Evening Program, everyone will get to meet their work crews!
8:30 p.m. Youth group devotions
11 p.m. Lights-out
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday
6:45 a.m. Rise and shine!
7:00 a.m. Breakfast, gather supplies and sack lunches
8:00 a.m. Morning program and then depart for work sites!
12:00 p.m. On-site lunch and devotions
3:30 p.m. Return to lodging for clean-up and free time
5:00 p.m. Dinner
7:30 p.m. Evening program
8:30 p.m. Youth group devotions
11:00 p.m. Lights-out
Same schedule as the other days until 12:30 p.m.
12:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Youth groups have free time (dinner is on their own)
7:30 p.m. The Variety Show and Evening Program start
8:30 p.m. Youth group devotions
11:00 p.m. Lights-out
Check-out: Saturday by 9:00 a.m.
Your participants will provide home repairs at no cost for elderly, disabled, and disadvantaged people who need your help. Work crews typically serve the same resident for the entire trip, creating an environment where meaningful relationships develop.
Most projects are designed to be completed during the trip, allowing your group to experience the satisfaction of a job well done. You’ll serve the needs of others through projects like interior and exterior painting, building or repairing porches and wheelchair ramps, building or repairing steps, weatherization and other home repairs. No skills are needed!
Each group is asked to bring painting and construction tools including rollers, gloves, hammers, circular saws, post hole diggers, electric drills, ladders, etc. A cooler and water jug is also needed for every 6 people--these keep lunch and water cold for participants on their work site. The full Tool List is located online for every registered group on their Group Page.
The full Packing List is also located online for every registered group on their Group Page, but it’s pretty much what you’d expect. A twin-size air mattress and bedding for sleeping, water jugs and coolers for lunches, work gloves, and modest swimsuits and clothing appropriate for a Christian mission trip.
Safety is our top priority!
A Workcamp can hold up to 400 participants and we house them all typically at a middle or high school. Group Mission Trip staff transforms the facility into a home away from home–there will be a separate boy’s hall and girl’s hall, a cafeteria for meals, adequate bathrooms and showers, and either a gym or auditorium for programs.
Participants need to bring twin-size air mattresses, pillows, sleeping bags or other bedding to sleep on classroom floors. Youth groups are assigned to sleeping rooms together, gender separate. Sleeping rooms may be shared with other youth groups, depending on the size of groups and the size of the room.
Registered groups can see more information about their lodging facility online on their Group Page under the General Lodging tab. Trip Leaders are given the lodging facility’s address.
Meals will consist of hot breakfasts, picnic-style lunches, and hot dinners. All meals will be prepared for participants by kitchen staff. Picnic-style lunches will be assembled in the mornings and brought to work sites. The first provided meal is dinner on Sunday and the last meal is breakfast on Saturday. IMPORTANT NOTE: Dinner is NOT provided on Wednesday, youth groups have free time this day and dinner is on their own.
For registered groups: If you have a participant that has to eat gluten-free--please let us know. We can have a few gluten free options at camp, but need to know in advance to plan. The sample menu is located on Your Group Page under the Schedule, Menu, and Packing tab. Share this with your participants so they can start planning. Participants with special diets or allergies are welcome to bring their own food items to fill in as needed during the week. Please know that we do have peanut butter on the menu. Group Mission Trips is unable to guarantee there will not be any cross-contamination during meal preparation by kitchen staff. There will be a staff member available at camp who will be able to answer any questions about food. Click here for a visual on accommodations for dietary restrictions.
Focused on Jesus. Our goal is to point people to Jesus. Programs focus on Bible passages and daily themes that challenge us to respond to Jesus in ways we will never forget.
Interactive. People learn better by doing. Participants will be involved in sharing, speaking, singing, acting,reflecting...not just sitting and watching.
Relevant. Through creative multimedia, thought provoking sound and video, and moving contemporary worship, programs are designed to reach everyone.
Fun. Relationship-building activities, games and having fun are part of every program. Expect to have a great time!
*Deposits are non-refundable. Registration fees are in U.S. dollars and can be paid by check, money order, or credit card.
**There are no refunds after May 15th.
Payments can be made:
Call us! If there’s space available in your camp, we’ll ask for necessary payment. If you have a cancellation, and you’ve exhausted all efforts to re-fill spaces, call us to make cancellations. We’ll adjust your balance accordingly. 1-844-258-9616. Deposits are non-refundable. There are no refunds after May 15th.
Cancellations have a huge effect on the people we serve--it is devastating news to them when we have to cancel. Based on the number of registered participants, we plan for lodging, food orders, work materials and staffing–just for starters. Also, depending on the time of year, sometimes it’s simply impossible for us to re-fill cancelled spaces.
We recognize that unexpected events happen that can pull participants away from their original commitment. Give us a call, we are happy to talk through ideas to recruit other participants and keep your group intact. If there is no other option but to cancel your group, call us by May 15th to let us know. Deposits are non-refundable. There are no refunds after May 15th.
We ask that all participants arrive on time and stay for the entire time. Every part of the program is valuable and helps guarantee a life-changing experience. We really try not to make too many exceptions to this because it does affect other participants, residents, and work projects. Please check the schedule and make travel arrangements accordingly. Contact us if a situation arises.
All trips are filled on a first-come, first-served basis, so register early. However, if you register for a trip that's full, we'll give you a choice: Join the waiting list for your first choice, or register for your second-choice location. Call us. We're eager to help!
Absolutely! Don’t just take our word for it. Give us a call 1-844-258-9616 and we’d be happy to connect you with other youth leaders who have served with us.
When FAQs open you can right-click your mouse and save them to your computer or print them.
Our payment policy is designed to give you the most flexibility when reserving your mission trip experience with Group Mission Trips.
Register June-October 31st: No deposit is required to register until October 31st. Then, a $50 non-refundable deposit per person is due.*
Register November 1st-March 15th: $50 non-refundable deposit per person plus 50% of the remaining balance is due upon registration.*
Register March 15th-May 15th: Final balance is due upon registration.**
Register after May 15th: Final balance is due upon registration.**
*Deposits are non-refundable. Registration fees are in U.S. dollars and can be paid by check, money order, or credit card. **There are no refunds after May 15th.
We've worked with many of our local partners for years and serve on each of these trips ourselves so we have tons of information to share with you. If you'd like to request more information about this location, please fill out the form below and one of our Trip Advisors will get back to you as soon as possible.
All youth groups attending this trip must be in compliance with their diocesan safe environment program. Therefore, this trip is restricted to participants that are associated with a Catholic church. Participants will get to experience our typical camp programming, as well as extended worship, prayer, and liturgy, with Mass incorporated into our evening programs.
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