The trip this year was near Pikeville, KY, and the group worked through YWAM (Youth With a Mission). YWAM took care of lodging and food. The group actually stayed in a beautiful Hampton Inn in Pikeville and drove 20-30 minutes to work sites. All food was provided by the cafeteria of the University of Pikeville (breakfast and supper was eaten with the college students and they packed lunches for them to take them to their work sites). All agreed that eating and sleeping arrangements were not really too tough on this trip. The one negative of the arrangements was that it did take away a little from the "group" dimension, but they did work hard to overcome that and it seems as though they were still able to bond as a group.
Since YWAM's season really doesn't start until later, they had the group break up into two or three work groups and finish up projects from last summer. This included painting a shed and a porch, lowering a porch roof, redoing a bathroom, reorganizing a "hoarder" home and tossing out outdated things, fixing roofs, painting the whole interior of a trailer, and putting up siding. They had three and a half full work days and explored Breaks Interstate Park between Virginia and Kentucky the other half day. They worshiped at Neon Reformed Presbyterian Church on Sunday morning and Russ gave an extended devotional talk for their evening service. They studied the book of James each evening which included a time set aside for Journible writing.
The youth group just received a note from one of the families how grateful they were not only for the work that was done, but also by the love they received. The trip was also a great learning and growing opportunity for the kids and the consensus was that a good time was had by all. They are a great bunch of kids!