Student ministry leaders spend a lot of time researching different camp and mission trip options for their summer events. With so many feasible options available, it can be a little overwhelming. To alleviate any confusion and make your decision a little easier we’re blogging about what to expect at World Changers Construction, Church Planting and Urban projects. This post is about our Construction Projects, but you can read more about Church Planting and Urban projects on their respective blog posts.
World Changers Construction projects provide the avenue to connect with a local community in order to meet a physical need through home repair. The primary goal is not to meet a physical need, but to meet a spiritual need. Students spend approximately eight hours a day on ministry sites doing construction or other tasks helpful to homeowners. Students are trained and encouraged to seek opportunities for sharing the gospel with homeowners or other community residents.
We hope that students leave a construction project equipped beyond how to do physical labor. We want students to leave with a desire to serve others and equipped for a lifestyle of gospel sharing.
World Changers refers to the teams serving at each ministry site as a crew. Each crew is a mixture of students and adults from various churches. This is an opportunity to encourage students a little out of their comfort zone by meeting new people. If a group leader wants their group to serve together on crew(s) that can be arranged, as long as requested in advance.
Possible ministry site activities: painting, roofing (students 16 and older in some cities), handicap ramps, vinyl siding replacement, drywall repair, landscaping
Due to the need for skilled labor, group leaders have the opportunity to involve adults with construction experience from their church. Each crew has a crew chief (adult role) responsible for the completion of construction tasks, and teaching students how to safely complete construction activities. More details can be found here regarding construction volunteers and how to apply.
To minimize the stress on a group leader to prepare their group, World Changers provides several resources. A comprehensive Group Leader Manual with policies, what to bring lists, etc. well in advance of the trip. We also provide a Pre-Project Study which includes several devotionals and a parent meeting outline. We have a Director that will begin communicating with leaders in January. They will be serving groups on site and are readily available to keep leaders informed and questions answered.
You can find the full schedule here (about the middle of the page). In general the first day of the project is getting groups checked in and kicking off the week with the Welcome Celebration. The first evening of every project is spent in a City Experience. This is an organized activity that church groups will experience together to learn more about the city and the people they’re ministering to.
Other scheduled activities include the First Crew Chat, which is when students find out what crew they’ve been assigned to and gather together for the first time. Students have the opportunity to volunteer to serve in different leadership roles on their crew. These roles include devotion leader, break master, crew reporter and medic. Students are trained on these roles during the scheduled Crew Position Training time. The rest of the week days are composed of ministry site time, meals and daily gatherings.
Lodging for construction projects is usually a local church or school. Groups stay in classrooms, bringing their own bedding such as air mattresses and a sleeping bag or blankets. Separate areas for boys and girls are designated by staff. Food is contracted with cafeteria staff, church staff or a local caterer. The lodging auditorium or sanctuary is typically where any large group gatherings take place. When possible students will have access to a gym during free time.
This video shares a little bit more about World Changers!