You’ll find a real, old-fashioned covered bridge in the historic town of Princeton. You’ll also find people who need your help!
Today, Bureau County is dotted with small, rural communities—hometowns that have been hit hard by the recent economic downturn. Until recently there were five large factories in the area—today four have closed, leaving people out of work and losing hope. No new businesses are moving to the area—and younger citizens are leaving in search of jobs elsewhere, leaving behind seniors who struggle to maintain their homes.
Come visit and serve in a bustling city two hours west of Chicago. With a variety of shops, restaurants, and activities throughout the city, you will not regret spending a week serving in the area.
|Jul 28 2019 to Aug 03 2019||Junior/Senior High (12+)||Available||Keep Me Informed|
Participants will stay in a facility that is *fully air-conditioned and has indoor showers! There will be 9 private showers for females and 14 open showers, and 2 private showers, for males. If you're worried about modesty, bring your swimsuits. Everyone will be sleeping on floors, gender separate, so bring your air mattresses.
*Subject to change.
At the Princeton, IL Workcamp, your group will demonstrate Jesus’ love and compassion in tangible ways by building wheelchair ramps, fixing porches, weatherizing homes, and painting inside and out.
The last time this collection of churches and citizens hosted a Workcamp, they hit a homerun. Their collected experience as past Group Workcamps participants, as well as their connection to the people in their community, will ensure you are treated well and are welcomed into Princeton.
Princeton is an amazing neighboring city of Chicago with much to do and see. From the Starved Rock Family Fun and Crown Lanes Center, to the City County Park, you will not be disappointed.
See a show at the Apollo Theater or explore the Red Covered Bridge. Downtown Princeton is waiting for you and so are the residents!
|Price:||$464 per person|
|Register before October 31,
||No deposit is required.|
|Register June-October||Deposit of $50 per person is due October 31, 2018.|
|Register November-March 15, 2019
||Deposit of $50 per person is due upon registration.|
|Register March 15, 2019-May 15, 2019
||Deposit of $50 per person plus 50% of your group’s balance is due upon registration.|
|Register after May 15, 2019
||Your entire balance is due.**|
You can find additional information on specific locations by visiting this page.
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.
When FAQs open you can right-click your mouse and save them to your computer or print them.
Jr/Sr High trips: Must be at least 12 years old OR entering the 7th grade in the fall of 2019.
Sr High trips: Must be at least 14 years old OR entering the 9th grade in the fall of 2019.
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 are going to have a few gluten free options at camp this year and need to have an accurate number. 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.
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!
After you register by paying a $50 (non-refundable) deposit per space, there are 2 payment dates for the remaining balance:
March 15, 2019: Half of what is remaining is due.
May 15, 2019: The final balance is due. (All payments are non-refundable after this date.)
Payments can be made here online, by phone, or by mail.
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. If you cancel a space before May 15th, 2019 you’ll just lose the $50 deposit. The entire fee is forfeited for cancellations made after May 15th, 2019.
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. Please 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, keep in mind that registration fees, less the $50 deposits per person, are refundable when you notify the Registration Team by May 15, 2019. The entire mission trip fee will be forfeited for cancellations after May 15th, 2019.
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 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!
The majority of a Challenge Workcamp is the same as a regular Workcamp. We do recommend prior Workcamp or construction experience for these camps because projects will be more construction intensive. Groups are asked to bring additional tools.
Absolutely! Don’t just take our word for it. Give us a call (844.258.9616) and we’d be happy to connect you with other youth leaders who have served with us.