Youth mission trips are a fantastic way to reach out to communities, to serve others, and to help our youth understand that serving is not about rescuing others, it's about building relationships. A youth group mission trip is not a rescue trip. Instead, it’s an avenue that takes us on a journey, getting to know life through the lens of others. It’s meant to be a humbling experience where we get to employ our gifts and talents and render them to those that need it most.
Knowing this can help you determine the kind of work that you would want to pursue and who you want to serve. Narrow down what kind of mission you’d like to participate in. Mission trips can be global, domestic, or local. They can also be short-term or long-term. Determine the length and the location you’d like to serve.
Excellent global youth mission trip ideas include the following: Teach children, build homes, renovate homes, childcare assistance, and aid in the area of healthcare. Within each concept of mission work, many things are involved. For instance, if you pursue teaching orphans, then you’d most likely be participating as an assistant to the educator or perhaps teaching a skill. If the mission trip includes childcare assistance at an orphanage, you could host fun events and activities for the children that include sports and recreational activities.
Another excellent mission trip idea is perhaps to build homes in places such as Guatemala or Mexico. Choosing to go Global for a youth mission trip will broaden the perspectives and the minds of adolescents. The great thing about participating in some form of construction in another country is that no skills are required; instead, skills are learned. The overall learning experience and bonds that are formed through the process leave a permanent mark in the hearts of the young men and women who leaped into such an experience.
Oversees there is a massive issue in the case of clean water, so you could choose a project that would assist in providing clean water to those communities. Choosing to go global on a youth mission trip is to step out of one’s comfort zone so the youth must prepare to broaden their minds, and maybe even their palates for different foreign cuisines.
To go domestic is an excellent option if the youth group you are leading is new to missions and would prefer to serve where things may feel familiar at some level. For instance, if your youth mission group resides in Florida, maybe choosing to go to another state such as South Dakota, North Carolina, Tennessee, or Washington is not daunting.
In this case, great ideas would be to serve by maintaining, repairing, and painting local churches, neighborhood centers, and prepare for any community work that is needed. Within this scope of work, there is also gardening, working at a nursery, and building a community park. All of these are also great ideas to pursue in your local community.
There are so many areas within our cities and communities that need assistance. If the youth missions group that you lead is more willing and able to help locally, you can do so by helping within homeless shelters by volunteering to cook and serve food. Your youth missions group would also benefit from volunteering in local marathon events for specific causes such as human trafficking, the fight against cancer, and the walk for autism, among others.
Many activities are going on in your community, so do some outside the box thinking with your team to come up with what fits best. Partnering with other local churches can be a great idea. A long term partnership with local churches can offer great ministry experience specific to your location.
Think about the furry friends within the community. A fun way to serve and to organize a local mission is to help and volunteer in an animal organization, wildlife, marine, and veterinary where you can assist with the care of animals. Think further; what about art? Look deep within your communities and search for art projects, murals, and aesthetic needs within the inner cities where you can have your youth serve creatively.
You can also look into organizing a mission to a children’s hospital where the youth can spend time reading, singing songs, or preparing different forms of entertainment for the kids at the hospital.