Welcome to the homeland of the Mescalero Apache people—just a stone’s toss from the famous mountain resort town of Ruidoso! Originally a nomadic group of hunter/gatherers who roamed across a large section of the Southwest, the Apache were well-known for their staunch defense of their lands. These are the descendants of legendary warriors like Cochise and Geronimo—living on the land sacred to them, surrounded by their four Sacred Mountains.
The Apache people hold a deep respect for their elders. And Group has partnered with the tribe for years to provide safe and comfortable homes for their senior citizens. People here look forward to having you join their community every summer—so you can count on a warm welcome. And the school where you will be staying is top-notch—big, bright, and modern, with oodles of showers, and surrounded by a pine forest.
Yes, Mescalero is distant, and “off the beaten path.” But the invitation to serve God here is a call to experience a rich and ancient Native American culture—centuries old but still fresh and vibrant today. You may come as a stranger—but you will serve as a respected and valued friend.
Cool Stuff: Even off the reservation you’ll be surrounded by the magnificent culture of the Southwest—from the shops and eateries of Ruidoso to the beautiful old church in the historic desert village of Tularosa.
The Mescalero people revere their elders—and the projects here are as varied as the people you’ll serve. You may:
- Help repair a rotted floor for an elderly couple
- Build a wheelchair ramp for an aging widow
- Bring new life to a home with bright new paint
Get to know your resident—and learn about the proud history of these amazing people!
Far from it! We created the concept of workcamp mission trips way back in 1977. Since then we’ve served hundreds of thousands of participants. Our team is led by Thom and Joani Schultz and includes several seasoned veterans with decades of experience in mission trip planning and programming. We’ve also added some innovative new updates to the mission trip experience.
No. We are the original, genuine Group mission experience, a part of Group Publishing of Loveland, Colorado, for over 40 years. Others may use a similar name, but they’re not connected to us. You may rely on Group’s Lifetree Adventures for a worry-free experience, thorough and professional preparations by our highly experienced staff, spiritual growth experiences created by Group’s experts, meaningful work projects, an emphasis on safety, and the stability and security of a large established organization.
Anyone with a heart to serve others and a desire to grow closer to God is welcome to join us on a Lifetree Adventure. We welcome a blend of individuals and groups. Our domestic mission trips are designed with teenagers and youth groups in mind. Participants who are at least 14 years old or entering 9th grade in the fall of 2019 are welcome at our (Senior High) Advanced Home Repair Adventures, while all other Adventures are open to both Senior and Junior High (at least 12 years old or entering 7th grade in fall 2019). Our international experiences include a wider variety of ages, groups, and backgrounds. Your mission adventure concierge can give you more details.
The Group team provides care to nearly all the details of your trip, including lodging, meals, project coordination and building materials/supplies during the mission experience, discipleship programming and materials, on-site support crew, and a T-shirt for every participant. The fee doesn’t include transportation or meals to and from the trip location or during your time off.
For our domestic mission trips, we use a clean, comfortable high school or middle school as our home base for the week. We sleep, eat, and do all our programming at the school. You’ll want to bring an air mattress and bedding.
The safety, security, and well-being of every participant is our number-one priority. Our team has years of experience ensuring that extra precautions are given to make every aspect of the mission trip as safe as possible. We visit each location in person several times before your Adventure, and we check each worksite for safety before you arrive.
Many of our trips give you the option to focus on home repair or relational ministry. Actively engaging in the local culture is important to us. So, you might yodel, dance, cook, craft, clog, powwow, or sing. Your mission adventure concierge will have specific details for each location.
What types of work does “home repair” entail?
Depending upon the location, need, and your skill or desire for work, you might be assigned to a variety of projects. Work ranges from challenging at Monument Valley to moderately challenging at Red Lake to moderate at Owego, Mescalero, and Lame Deer. Raytown and Monson offer moderate to simple home-repair projects as well as relational ministry opportunities.
What if I don’t have any construction skills?
Don’t worry—what really matters is your desire to work. No matter how challenging the project, if you really want to put in the effort, skilled Local Project Advisors and on-staff Troubleshooters will be available to ensure your success!
What does “relational ministry” entail?
Relational ministry could entail a variety of opportunities to interact with and meet the needs of local people. From assisting elderly residents to serving at a food bank to building trails, your work will be a valuable opportunity to connect one-on-one with people who need your help.
You need to bring one adult volunteer (age 21 or older) for every 5 students (age 20 years or younger) you register. If you have both genders registered, you need to have at least one adult volunteer of each gender.
You will provide your own transportation to and from your mission trip. The vehicles and drivers you bring will be used to provide daily transportation to and from the project sites.
Very much so! Group’s Lifetree Adventures is unique in that we partner directly with local tribal leaders and agencies. We’ve enjoyed decades of solid relationships based on trust and respect. People on the reservations now count on us to come—and every resident will have specifically applied for your help.
The Next Steps
Build the excitement
Have the conversations to get approval from leaders and key decision makers. Download FREE Plan-it Guide
Build your team
Spread the word and assemble a list of who might be on your team.
Answer these questions
- Have you considered a budget with travel costs, registration fees, and emergency fund?
- Have you received firm commitments from a core number of people?
- What is most exciting to you and others about this trip?
Reserve Your spaces
Register for your trip by calling our friendly staff at 800-385-4545 ext. 4166, or by registering on this website.
Get a catalog sent to your mailbox. This catalog contains information about all of our mission trips.Request a Catalog
Get in touch with one of our Adventure Concierges to schedule a time for a one-on-one meeting.Schedule Meeting
FREE Adventure Plan-it Guide
Receive valuable resources that help make your decision-making and trip-planning easy!Download Guide
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