march 14-21, 2020
grades 9-12

IMG_1183.jpg

Register here.

pay online here.

the opportunity to serve & grow is right in front of you.

Each year over Spring Break we travel to the Dominican Republic for a week of working with and for others. We learn a lot. We work a lot. We laugh a lot. This is an amazing opportunity, and it is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for all who attend. Join us as we do construction work, teach English to kids in a classroom setting, and head out to small villages to help with a medical team. This is a unique trip each year and not only do we grow together as a community, but we also change lives of those we encounter, finding ourselves changed in the process.

how much does it cost?

The Dominican Republic Mission Trip is $999 per person for the week. This cost includes plane tickets, transportation while on the island, food, lodging, and a trip t-shirt. Students will be responsible for purchasing food while traveling to and from the DR at the airport, as well as any snacks or souvenirs they might want to buy while on the island.

  • $400 deposit due at time of registration.

  • $300 due by December 1.

  • $299 remaining balance due by February 1.

what if i need to cancel?

Don’t worry—we know things come up and sometimes we have to adjust our plans. As long as you cancel by January 1, 2020, you will receive a reimbursement of the full amount. After January 1, we can only offer reimbursements if another student is able to fill your student’s vacated spot on the trip. Thank you for understanding!

do i need a passport?

Yes! If you don’t already have one, apply for one as soon as possible so it will arrive in time (sometimes passports can take a while to arrive!). If you do have one, ensure that it expires no later than September 13, 2020. If not, you’ll need to apply for another one right away. Sometimes airport customs won’t let you fly if your passport expires within six months of your travel dates. After you get your passport, we will need a photocopy of the first page (the page with your name and photo on it).

pre-trip meetings

If you’re coming on the trip (or thinking about coming!), try your best to make it to our information meeting on November 3rd. We’ll answer all the questions you have and hopefully help you decide if this trip is right for you. Parents are welcome and encouraged to attend (but not required). Potential adult chaperone volunteers are also encouraged to attend. If you’re coming on the trip, you are required to attend the remaining meetings before the trip for important training before we hit the ground in the Dominican.

  • Info Meeting: November 3 @ 10:45am

  • Training Meeting: January 12 @ 5pm

  • Commissioning: March 8 @ 9:30am (during worship service)

  • Final Meeting: March 8 @ 10:45am

fundraiser: oct 23 2019

Every year, Village Youth hosts the annual Chili Cookoff to raise money for the Dominican Republic Mission Trip. If you’re going on the trip, you’ll be asked to participate as a volunteer to support the trip. The Chili Cookoff is a blast—consider entering a chili or dessert this year! Entry is free when you enter a chili.

 

“if i have a coronary at least have the decency to drag me to a kmart so i can die there.”

 

-lewis maclaughlin “mac” muehlberger, dr 2019

IMG_0928.jpg
IMG_2805.jpg

medical services in the bateyes

On different days of the trip, students can opt to travel to the batey communities to assist in several medical projects, including a nutrition counseling program, which help families better know how to help their children avoid malnutrition, a hypertension station, where students will help medical professionals advise patients on how to reduce high blood pressure, and a growth monitoring program to help parents keep their children at a healthy weight for their current stage of development.

dominican republic medical partnership

Village Youth first sent a group to the Dominican Republic around 1995. From the relationship developed over the ensuing years, Village Church created a separate program to continue their mission efforts year-round. The Dominican Republic Medical Partnership (DRMP) of Village Church has provided nearly 25 years of healthcare and health education to children and adults living in the impoverished bateyes in the Dominican Republic. They promote sustainable healthcare efforts with Dominican partner organizations such as Fundacion Enciende Una Luz (Light A Candle Foundation). Efforts include children’s growth monitoring and nutrition, ongoing hypertension and diabetes management, medical care, family planning and life-changing surgeries in partnership with Hospital El Buen Samaritano (Good Samaritan Hospital).

IMG_1145.jpg

classrooms

The school we’ve helped construct in the past is now fully operational, so when we go work on the construction site, a few students will split off and assist teachers in the classrooms. It’s always a really fun time—our musical staff member, Kevin, plays guitar, and teaches the kids interactive dances to engage them. You don’t have to know Spanish (or English!) to dance!

 

la romana

The city where we’ll be staying and working is called La Romana, located on the southern coast of the Dominican Republic. La Romana is primarily a sugar mill town, where neighborhoods called bateyes house seasonal sugar cane harvesters from nearby Haiti. Because these neighborhoods house mostly immigrants and not native Dominicans, they have historically been ignored by the Dominican government when it comes to providing basic services, education for the children, healthcare, and other resources.

While we’re in the Dominican Republic, we stay at a mission compound called Casa Pastoral, which is a housing facility that hosts groups like us while they’re doing mission work in the surrounding areas. They’ll provide our meals, rooms (boys and girls stay in separate rooms), and showers. The compound is operated by Hospital el Buen Samaritano, which is located in La Romana.

DSCN0268.jpg

construction work

In the past, we’ve traveled to a local barrio (small community) and worked on additions and improvements to a local church and a school, to which we’ve recently helped add an additional multipurpose room for community events. Students could be doing anything from painting to moving rocks to hauling bricks, so come prepared to work. Your clothes will never be the same again!

Video by the fantabulous Abby Schipfer!

IMG_3598.jpeg

“what kind of person wears crocs to a wedding?”

 

-alex blickhan, dr 2019