Sep 2020 — May 2021

Development and Outreach Route

Share the Gospel and help build stronger communities
Squad is in the Field
4 countries

Route Guides

Hope Mendola-Wong
Program Exec
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I thought I was a Christian, but when I was 19 my view of everything (Jesus, the Bible, Church, Christianity) came tumbling down. I found myself angry and confused as I questioned what I had been told all my life. Little did I know I was on the path to making my faith my own. I spent the next few years figuring out who God was and what I believed. By the time I was 21, I decided Jesus was the answer. Since then, God has taken me from the slums of India to the mountains of Africa. He's transformed my heart, strengthened my faith, and given me purpose beyond myself. My story has given me a passion for the next generation because I know firsthand how influential those first few years out of high school are. I can't wait for you to join us on this journey!
Bill Swan
Elder
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I spent the first two decades of my Christian life afraid of disappointing God. I was trying to be a good servant and live a good life so God would be happy with me. During my own journey as a World Racer, God revealed how deeply He loves me, and that His desire is to actually partner with me in this life. This changed everything for me! I've spent the last nine years partnering with God through the World Race, to help others awaken to how much their Father loves them and the great adventure of living and loving like Jesus. I can't wait to see what God has in store for you on your World Race journey.
Jodi Owens
Squad Mentor
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I grew up always knowing who Jesus was. My Grandmother made sure of that. I knew I wanted to live for Jesus and made the decision to follow Him when I was 8 years old. Once I was in my later teenage years, through a series of life events and my own selfishness, I stepped away from following Jesus to pursue what the world had to offer. When I was 20 years old, I realized I was miserable. I wanted more from life and I knew there had to be a source of real, pure joy somewhere rather than chasing what felt ȦĨŒgoodȦĨœ in the moment. I turned to Jesus and everything changed. I made the decision to commit my whole life to Him. I worked at a church in their youth/college ministry for about 5 years. I loved it a ton and thatȦĨœs where God grew my heart for the generation below mine. Rounding out my time there, I knew in my heart I was called to go and do more but I wasnȦĨœt sure how. I found out about the World Race from a friend, decided to take the chance and launched in January of 2016. I was absolutely blown away! The journey was hard but it was also so beautiful. Never did I imagine that I could grow so much in my relationship with Jesus while having the opportunity to serve Him outside of America. Because of my own journey, God has given me a passion for leading this next generation to Him. I am passionate about seeing young people know Jesus and choose to follow Him forever. My heart is to help teach this next generation how to get outside of themselves and choose life in the Kingdom of God.
Karen Harrison
Coach
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Tim is a pastor of Grace 242, a new church in Mequon, WI. He grew up in upstate NY and moved to Florida before high school. Tim met Jesus through a ministry called Young Life. He met his wife Karen, married in 1985 while working with Young Life, and they have been in some sort of partnership in ministry ever since. Tim served in ministry in Tampa, Ft. Lauderdale, Amarillo, NJ, Spokane and Wisconsin. His only child Noah is on Gap year Squad D. Tim loves to fish, ski and travel. He also plays guitar and loves all kinds of music. Karen is a pastor of discipleship at Grace 242 here she serves with her husband Tim. She grew up in Florida and graduated from Florida State. While in college Karen was a part of the FSU Circus where she flew on the Trapeze and did an act called Skypole. After college, Karen came to faith in Jesus and felt called to ministry. Since then, Karen are been a part of Young Life and Ministry either as a Youth Director or Pastor. Her only child, Noah is a part of Gap Year ȹƑƉ Squad D. Karen loves the beach, mountains, hiking, hammocking, hanging out in coffee shops, listening to music, reading and running.
Tim Harrison
Coach
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Tim is a pastor of Grace 242, a new church in Mequon, WI. He grew up in upstate NY and moved to Florida before high school. Tim met Jesus through a ministry called Young Life. He met his wife Karen, married in 1985 while working with Young Life, and they have been in some sort of partnership in ministry ever since. Tim served in ministry in Tampa, Ft. Lauderdale, Amarillo, NJ, Spokane and Wisconsin. His only child Noah is on Gap year Squad D. Tim loves to fish, ski and travel. He also plays guitar and loves all kinds of music. Karen is a pastor of discipleship at Grace 242 here she serves with her husband Tim. She grew up in Florida and graduated from Florida State. While in college Karen was a part of the FSU Circus where she flew on the Trapeze and did an act called Skypole. After college, Karen came to faith in Jesus and felt called to ministry. Since then, Karen are been a part of Young Life and Ministry either as a Youth Director or Pastor. Her only child, Noah is a part of Gap Year ȹƑƉ Squad D. Karen loves the beach, mountains, hiking, hammocking, hanging out in coffee shops, listening to music, reading and running.
Bernadette Beacham
Alum Squad Leader
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Katelyn Webb
Alum Squad Leader
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Regan Horn
Alum Squad Leader
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Deborah Ulsh
Advisor
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My name is Deborah Ulsh, and I have worked with Adventures in Missions since 2015. I started in Admissions, served as a Gap Year Mentor for 3 years, and am now back in Admissions! I went on the World Race in 2014 and fell in love with this ministry, discipleship, and missions. I met my husband here at Adventures, and we got married in November of 2018. I am passionate about seeing people walk out their identity as sons and daughters of God! And I'll never say no to a good cup of coffee.

Where They're Going - What They’ll Do

Central America

Costa Rica

Central America
Costa Rica

Costa Rica

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Location: San Jose, Costa Rica
Ministry: Join Adventures in Missions Costa Rica base and partners.
Focus: Camp Ministry, Feeding Program, Sex Trafficking Ministry, Community Outreach, Children’s Ministry, Youth Ministry, Evangelism, Manual Labor

Begin your journey in Costa Rica, where misty volcanoes stand guard over bustling San Jose, home to our Adventures in Missions base. Serve with a variety of our ministry partners who are showing the radical love of Jesus to this city. Your team might teach dance or English, or share God’s Word with neighborhood kids. Or you might do community projects in slums devastated by gang violence and poverty. As you grow in your spiritual gifts through weekly teachings from our base staff, walk out your faith by showing this pura vida nation the true source of Life.

Our mission is to partner with kingdom-minded ministries, form well-established relationships with current ministries, and advance leadership skills through discipleship with squads or short-term teams who come stay with us. We focus on the power of Christ and how He wants to work in each of our lives each day and create a high emphasis on listening to His voice, creating a teachable environment, and prioritizing servant leadership.

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Central America

Guatemala

Central America
Guatemala

Guatemala

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Location: Guatemala
Ministry: Serve alongside the Adventures in Missions base in various outreach programs.
Focus: Community Outreach and Development, Children’s Ministry, Sports Ministry

Your journey begins in Guatemala. You’ll spend three months at our Adventures in Missions base, located near the town of Antigua. As our base staff teaches and equips you with God’s Word, you will work alongside them to build relationships with the surrounding communities. You may find yourself playing soccer with neighborhood kids, doing outreach in local villages, or teaching English in a primary school. Here you will reach new heights in your faith and show God’s love in tangible ways.

About the base:
Adventures Guatemala serves alongside pastors and leaders through community development (SERVE), discipleship (DISCIPLE), and activation of the Church (SEND) to establish the Kingdom of God locally and internationally.

  • We SERVE communities through water filter distribution, community outreach, stove installation.
  • We DISCIPLE through monthly Church Activation conferences, Beauty for Ashes, and team discipleship.
  • We SEND through training and activation.
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Asia

Thailand

Asia
Thailand

Thailand

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Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
Ministry: Network of local ministry partners
Focus: Children’s Ministry, Teaching English, Community Outreach

This nation’s friendly people have earned Thailand its suitable nickname as the Land of Smiles. Here you will have the opportunity to reveal the truth of Jesus to a deeply unreached country, whether you are prayer-walking through the red-light district, ministering to tourists, playing with street kids or teaching English to local Thai people.

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Africa

Eswatini

Africa
Eswatini

Eswatini

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Location: Nsoko, eSwatini
Ministry: Serve eSwatini alongside the Adventures in Missions base.
Focus: Children’s Ministry, Community Development, Leadership

During the last three months of your journey, you will partner with the Adventures in Missions eSwatini base. The team there is bringing new hope to a country where thousands of children have been orphaned by the HIV/AIDS epidemic. At Carepoints around the country, the local eSwatini staff provides the children with food, clean water, education, healthcare, and discipleship. We will equip you to holistically care for these children and teach them about Jesus. Breakaway from modern life as you serve in Nsoko, a place marked by incredible sunsets and the simple pace of African rural life.

David and Jenna Towns felt they had a call to Africa on their lives and yet God was directing them to Nepal for a season. On the way to Nepal they spent 7 months in eSwatini and truly fell in love with the community, people, and beauty of the country. As they were realizing the Nepal Base wasn't going to be in their future, God put eSwatini back on their heart and began calling them 'home' to eSwatini. They, along with their two boys Manning and Azariah, have been instrumental in stewarding Gap Year teams in Nsoko, eSwatini. David enjoys sharing through spoken word and Jenna loves working with her hands to create artisan crafts with the Gogos through Timbali Crafts. They have such a heart for drawing creativity out of people and helping them flourish in their identity and calling.

What we do in eSwatini:
The team focuses on fighting poverty in the Kingdom of Eswatini through training the next generation of leaders. Our program leaders focus on personal development and form strategic partnerships to lift communities upward and onward.

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*Routes may change if unforeseen issues arise.

Active Squad

Squad is the term we use at the World Race to describe the 30-45 people traveling with you on your route this year!

Squad
Kaitlyn Clarkson
Kaitlyn Clarkson
Urbandale, IA
Reagan Grant
Reagan Grant
Atlanta, GA
Briana Grover
Briana Grover
Hampton, IA
Megan Hodges
Megan Hodges
Johnstown, PA
Clara Scott
Clara Scott
Little Rock, AR
Abby VanderMeer
Abby VanderMeer
DeMotte, IN
Karly Barlow
Karly Barlow
North Bend, WA
Gracie Brown
Gracie Brown
Atoka, Tennessee
gabby Gansle
gabby Gansle
Alpharetta, GA
Sidney Key
Sidney Key
Atascadero, California
Esther Marques
Esther Marques
Cumming, Georgia
Abba Ritter
Abba Ritter
Greer, SC
Josh Bachtel
Josh Bachtel
Lawrenceville, Georgia
Payton Parker
Payton Parker
Austin, TX
Josh Pohl
Josh Pohl
Sterling, VA
Madeleine Cooper
Madeleine Cooper
Arlington, VA
Sarah Hicks
Sarah Hicks
Covington, Georgia
Abby Horn
Abby Horn
Eden Prairie, Minnesota
Camille Neigh
Camille Neigh
COLORADO SPGS, Colorado
Sofia Obermaier
Sofia Obermaier
Melbourne, FL
Elina Landin
Elina Landin
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Katie Lederer
Katie Lederer
Portland, ME
Sierra Strickland
Sierra Strickland
Blackshear, GA
Taylor Theobald
Taylor Theobald
Ball Ground, GA
Ellie Zeller
Ellie Zeller
castle rock, CO
Gracie Farmer
Gracie Farmer
Tuscaloosa, AL
Bethany Hintz
Bethany Hintz
Colorado Springs, CO
Vivian Skattum
Vivian Skattum
Eden Prairie, MN
Emily Webb
Emily Webb
Aylett, Virginia
Application Closed

Stories From the Field

Want to know what it's really like to go on the World Race? Check out our most recent updates from World Racers about life on the field and how you could be a part of it!