God's Country Cooperative Parish
The United Methodist Church
Serving Michigan's Eastern Upper Peninsula
Engadine | Germfask | Grand Marais | Hulbert-Tahquamenon | McMillan | Newberry | Paradise
The Volunteer In Mission Program
We appreciate your interest in the God’s Country Cooperative Parish. VIM has made a valuable contribution to the services and programs offered to the community by GCCP. The work, the enthusiasm, and the love shared during the VIM experience have a profound effect on the lives of the participants.
The 4 Goals of the Volunteer In Mission Program
- We hope the time spent working and sharing together will help your group to grow in Christian love, and that each individual will use the time away from his or her normal environment and routine to reflect and pray about the problems and joys in their own lives and be spiritually enriched.
- We wish to help each individual understand what GCCP is and why it is important to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
- We hope to make the daily work beneficial to the Mission and the surrounding community.
- We hope during your stay here you will learn of the beauty and the richness of the Upper Peninsula and the people who live here and will compare their struggles and problems of your own communities.
About The Mission and Work
The purpose of God’s Country Cooperative Parish is to help the churches of the parish in spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ by strengthening them through ministering to each other, through sharing talents and resources, and through reaching out to all people by pastor and laity.
After you have applied and been accepted, we will talk with you about specific projects for your group. Your choice of projects should include a look at the number of people you bring and the understanding that the GCCP maintenance needs are important to the Mission’s overall impact in the area. We will work with you to help you choose and appropriate projects.
There is always a need for people with maintenance and building skills, but there are also a lot of other tasks that need to be done here. These tasks often use skills that are not traditionally thought of when considering coming on a VIM team. Please let us know all of your skills; there is always a job for everyone at GCCP. Please have each person complete the Volunteer “Response- Ability” Survey. This is very important.
Who Should Apply?
The VIM program at GCCP welcomes both youth and adults. We accept your fellowships, young adults and adult groups, district groups and conference groups.
Group Counselors and Leaders
For youth groups, the group counselors/leaders need to be existing leaders, rather than having adults that are new to the group lead the VIM Team. The group counselors/leaders play an important role in VIM. We depend on you to lead your group’s VIM teams. You will make the assignments, meet with the staff to plan the work and discuss needs to arrive at a completed project. Choose your leaders in this area carefully. If you are doing construction or another special project, you will need to bring people who have experience in those areas to supervise your group. For those activities the minute-by-minute supervision needs to come from your leaders. For construction projects, usually some experience in home repair will be adequate. The leader does not have to be a professional.
How Long Can You Stay?
There is work for VIM groups who come for one day, a weekend, several days, or an entire week!!!!
During the summer VIM teams start on Sunday afternoon and end Saturday morning. Estimate as closely as possible the number of people you expect to participate (please not the information under group ages and numbers). GCCP welcomes VIM teams during summer and fall.
The normal schedule will consist of four days of work and one day touring the area. Work hours will be scheduled by your group leaders to include one hour for lunch. We require groups to be in by 5:30pm or make other arrangements with the GCCP staff. Please note: Our staff cannot leave until all groups are accounted for.
Following breakfast and before we begin the day’s work, we will meet together for devotions. Each group will be asked to help with morning devotions. Groups should also plan to set aside times when their members can share daily experiences which will enrich their spiritual lives.
Lodging & Food
When you arrive on Sunday, our staff will meet with you. Please plan on being here before 6:00 pm unless prior arrangements have been made. We will help you make arrangements if necessary. All groups may stay at Newberry United Methodist Church, motels, or campers. If staying at the church please bring your own bedding. (We do not furnish cots or beds). Shower arrangements have been made with a local establishment.
Food: You are responsible for your own food. We have kitchens at the churches in the communities you will be serving. You can cook, eat out, or any combination of the two. You must bring your own paper products – i.e., paper plates, napkins, plastic ware, garbage bags, etc. You will be staying at the Newberry United Methodist Church, 110 W. Harrie St, Newberry, MI 49868, Office # (906) 293-5711, Randy’s cell (906) 630-3213. We ask that all youth be in our building by 9:30 pm each night.
Travel and Arrival
Each group is responsible for providing transportation to the job site. Please try to arrive between 5:00pm and 6:00pm on your scheduled date of arrival. If this is impossible, please notify us of your estimated time of arrival. If you are detained and will not be arriving within an hour of your estimated time of arrival, please call ahead and let us know. Randy’s cell number is: (906) 630-3213.
The $225.00 per person will cover the cost of your materials and staffing. If your group would like to do large projects, we will ask you to bring extra monies to help offset the cost of the materials. There will be a one-time fee for using the churches for cooking or spending the night in the church of $50.00 to help offset the cost on the church.
When should you come?
Spring, summer and fall. We do not do VIM teams in the winter because of the weather.
Please bring proof of health insurance for each individual who will be attending. Information for low cost insurance is in the cover letter.
You must have a signed copy of the Liability Release Form (included in the application packet) for each individual who is planning to attend. If under the age of eighteen, it must be notarized.
Smoking in the GCCP vehicles and the use of alcohol and drugs is prohibited.