Diocesan Work Camp
Saturday 06-22-2024 - Friday 06-28-2024
Early Bird Registration ends March 4th at noon; Registration closes May 1st at noon
What is the Diocesan Work Camp?
The Diocesan Work Camp is a weeklong camp experience for high school youth to serve our brothers and sisters in need by making their homes safer, warmer, drier, and greener while also having the opportunity to grow in our Catholic faith.
Work Camp is not just a youth event. It is an opportunity for parishes to make a difference in the lives of those in need right here in our diocese while encouraging youth to answer their baptismal call to serve others. It is a transformative experience in the life of the adults who assist as well, whether as a volunteer, contractor, or chaperone.
Who should attend Work Camp?
Work Camp is open to all high school-aged youth (rising 9th graders through graduated 12th graders). The week is going to require that youth give of themselves to serve others and to grow spiritually. It will be a challenging week that will provide many learning opportunities for participants.
Where and when is the Diocesan Work Camp?
The Diocesan Work Camp will be held Saturday, June 22, 2024, through Friday, June 28, 2024 in Hampton Roads. The work projects will take place in the surrounding community. Peninsula Catholic High School in Newport News will serve as our home base where participants and adults will sleep, eat, and participate in evening programming.
What is the structure of Work Camp?
Each day of Work Camp will have a full schedule of events. Below you will find a brief overview of the activities for the week.
- Saturday: Arrival, Check-In, Opening Program
- Sunday: Mass, Teambuilding, Work Site Visit
- Monday – Wednesday: Daily Mass, Work Day, Evening Program
- Thursday: Daily Mass, Work Day, Dinner with Residents, Evening Program
- Friday: Daily Mass, Closing Program, Departure
Youth will have the opportunity to serve alongside other youth from across the diocese during the week. We will spend some time getting to know each other and learning how to work as a team. We will also review general safety and instructions and have the opportunity to prepare for the specific site locations. Each day we will celebrate Mass together. At various points throughout the week, there will be the opportunity for Eucharistic Adoration and Reconciliation. Evening program will have a wide variety of components and will be geared towards helping participants encounter Christ through sacraments, prayer, the people they serve, and their peers. Each day there will also be the opportunity for each parish to gather to process the experiences of the day.
Due to the structure of the week all participants must be able to attend the whole week of Work Camp. Full participation is expected from check-in time on Saturday until after the closing programming on Friday.
What are the requirements for adult participants (chaperones)?
For this event, 1 adult is required for every 6 youth (or fraction thereof) who are participating in Work Camp. Adult participants are responsible for looking out for the well-being of youth participants both at home base and at the work sites. Knowledge of home improvement is not needed to serve in this role. Because of the work we will be doing, adults should be able to work in environments that do not have air conditioning, be able to lift light-weight items, and be able to drive. Chaperones must be 21 years old before the beginning of Work Camp.
All adults must be in compliance with the Diocesan Safe Environment Policies, which includes completing the following:
- Screening One (every 5 years)
- VIRTUS training (once)
Please note that parish employees and Catholic school employees have additional screening that must be completed.
What are the requirements for adult home base volunteers?
Parishes are required to find Home Base Volunteers. These individuals will need to serve in various roles at home base such as Work Camp set-up and clean-up, kitchen assistance, running team building activities, performing office related tasks, running errands, etc. Home base volunteers must be at least 20 years old before the beginning of Work Camp. Individuals in this role cannot serve as a chaperone or a contractor.
The number of volunteers is dictated by the number of youth participants. A parish will bring one home base volunteer if they have 1-20 youth, 2 volunteers for 21-30 youth, and 3 volunteers if it is more than 30.
Home base volunteers are required to serve from Friday afternoon, June 21 to Friday, June 28, 2024. They will need separate transportation from their parish vehicles and will need to arrive between 12noon to 3pm on June 21, 2024. Carpooling may be available for volunteers coming from the same area.
What are the requirements for contractors? What is a contractor?
All parishes are required to bring 1 contractor for every 6 youth participants. A contractor is an adult who has home improvement knowledge, skills, and experience and is willing to teach and assist youth in completing work projects during Work Camp. Potential contractors will need to be approved by the Work Camp Coordinator and the lead contractors before they can serve in this role in order to ensure the safety of all participants, residents, and potential contractors. Approval can be obtained by submitting a Contractor application to [email protected]. A brief phone interview by our lead contractor may be required for approval. Contractors will be asked to provide their own transportation and specialty tools needed for their work site. Contractors are required Saturday, June 22 through Friday, June 28, 2024.
If your parish is attending Work Camp for the first time since 2021, and you have 11 or fewer youth attending, then you do not need to provide a Contractor. The first contractor you would need to provide is if you reach 12 youth.
Contractors will have the option for having overnight accommodations provided at the home base location. Contractors are not required to stay overnight. There will be a required contractors meeting that will happen in the spring.
Any parishes who cannot provide a contractor to meet the minimum guidelines below will be charged an additional $750 per missing contractor so the diocese can provide a contractor.
Youth/Adult Ratio Table
The following breakdown chart should be used when determining number of youth with the corresponding adults (chaperones, contractors and home base)
|Youth Participants||Adult Chaperones||Contractor||Home Base Volunteer|
What is the lodging situation?
Participants will be staying at Peninsula Catholic High School in Newport News. The accommodations will be in classrooms so participants will need to bring an air mattress, sleeping bag, and pillow.
All youth participants and adult chaperones are required to stay at the home base location.
What kind of transportation is needed?
Transportation to and from Work Camp is the responsibility of each parish to coordinate. Additionally, adult participants will be responsible for transportation of their work crew to and from work sites each day during Work Camp. Every adult chaperone is required to bring a vehicle that has seatbelts for themselves plus 6 youth participants and also has space for transporting 2 5-gallon water coolers, a large lunch bin, a small vehicle supply bin, and tools. We prefer minivans with 7-8 seatbelts because they have the most room, but SUVs with 7-8 seatbelts can also work. As a reminder, the use of 10-15 passenger vehicles is strictly prohibited per Diocesan Policy
Where do we get the tools for the work projects?
Each parish will be asked to bring some tools with them. This may include items like paint brushes and rollers, shovels, post diggers, circular saws, etc. Collecting tools to borrow for Work Camp from parishioners is both a great way to involve the entire parish and eliminate the need to purchase all the tools. A detailed list will be provided by May 20.
What supplies do parishes need to bring with them?
In addition to vehicles and general tools, parishes will be asked to bring certain supplies with them. A complete list will be provided in the Parish Handbook which will be sent by late spring. This may include items such as 5-gallon water coolers and a supply basket for each van which includes a basket, toilet paper, tissues, soap, and antibacterial hand soap.
How do we prepare our participants for Work Camp?
We will be provide a Parish Handbook that will help facilitate preparation for participating in Work Camp. The Parish Handbook will include topics like tool safety, what to expect, and how to prepare spiritually. This will require participants to gather together prior to Work Camp in 2-3 meetings, and it is up to the parish to coordinate. The diocese will provide guidance and resources as to how to facilitate these meetings.
Can other family members or children attend the Work Camp?
To ensure the safest environment possible, it is the policy of the Office for Evangelization that only registered participants may attend this event. Spouses or children of adult participants may attend if 1) they meet the target audience of the event AND 2) they are registered. Younger children of a registered adult participant (younger than a rising 9th grader) may not attend, including infants and toddlers.
What is the registration fee?
The registration fee per participant is listed below as well as available discounts.
Youth Participants & Adult Participants $400
Early Bird Rate (Until March 4th at Noon) $350
The last day to register is May 1, 2024 at Noon.
Contractors No charge
Adult Home Base Volunteer No charge
Each participant substitution on or before May 1, 2024 No charge
Each participant substitution between May 2 and June 3, 2024 $100
After May 2, all substitutions must be of the same sex as the person for whom they are substituting.
The last day to request a substitution is June 3, 2024 at Noon.
After this date all changes will be processed as cancellations.
Each participant cancellation on or before May 1, 2024 $100
Each participant cancellation after June 3, 2024 No refund
Discounts and Additional Fees:
Increased Attendance Discounts
For parishes who attended Work Camp in 2023, we will provide discounts if you experience an increase in numbers for Work Camp 2024. If your youth participation increases by 5 youth then you will have a 10% discount for each participant and if you increase your youth participation by 10 then you will have a 20% discount for each participant. This discount will go towards either the Early Bird Price or the Regular Pricing. The parish will be reimbursed for the discounted amount at the conclusion of the registration period.
One contractor is required for every 6 youth participants. For each additional contractor (above the ratio, see previous chart) you provide for the full work week, your parish group receives a discount of $750. (See “What is a contractor?” section for more details.)
Missing Contractor Fee
If your parish cannot provide the required number of contractors, for the full week of Work Camp, your parish will be charged $750 per missing contractor.
What does this registration fee cover?
The majority of the registration fee goes to cover the cost of materials necessary to complete the work projects. The work projects completed during Work Camp are significant home improvement projects (for example wheelchair ramp construction, deck and stair construction, and window replacement) that are designed to make homes warmer, safer, drier, and greener. The registration fee also goes to cover lodging, meals (Saturday dinner – Friday breakfast), and programming for all participants.
How do I register?
All youth and adults must register through their parish Youth Minister OR Catholic school coordinator. The registration process includes:
- Collect Registration Forms from Participants: Print out and distribute the registration form from evangelizerichmond.org. A copy should be maintained by the Youth Minister in case of emergency. DO NOT SEND THESE TO THE OFFICE FOR EVANGELIZATION.
- Register Participants via the Online Registration System: If you are the parish Youth Minister, contact the Office for Evangelization to get the event-specific password for the online registration system. DO NOT REGISTER CONTRACTORS BEFORE TALKING TO THE OFFICE FOR EVANGELIZATION.
- Send payments to the Office for Evangelization (if you did not pay via credit card on the online registration system): Be sure to include your parish/school name along with a list of participants for whom the payment applies. All outstanding registration fees will be invoiced to the parish/school.
For Home Base Volunteer registration, have each Home Base Volunteer fill out the corresponding registration form. Then the parish Youth Minister should register them via the Online Registration System.
For Contractor registration, have each Contractor fill out the Contractor Application. Then the parish Youth Minister should email that application to [email protected]. Approval will be given by the lead contractor.
Contact us via email ([email protected]or phone (804-622-5159).