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“It taught me a lot about working together as a community.”

“It is an amazing experience where you make new friends, will always be welcomed, and your faith can grow.”

“It’s a good way to meet new people and help others, while bonding as a church.”

About the Program

The Combined program is a hybrid of the High School and Middle School programs, and a great way to welcome youth groups who do year-round programming for both ages. At Combined sessions, work teams are often split to comprise of either older or younger youth, instead of mixing all ages together.

Groups attending Combined sessions should be prepared to foster community amongst a variety of ages and maturity levels. Some activities are optional to accommodate both middle and high school youth. Our staff cater the programming to each session’s group’s needs.

Download the 2020 Summer Information Packet.

Learn More About SSP's Combined Summer Program

2020 Dates

  • Week 1: June 21 – 27
  • Week 2: June 28 – July 4
  • Week 3: July 5 – 11
  • Week 4: July 12 – 18
  • Week 5: July 19 – 25
  • Week 6: July 26 – August 1
  • Week 7: August 2 – 8

Most sessions begin on Sunday afternoon and end on Saturday morning, unless otherwise indicated.

Program Schedule

Please note the program schedule may be subject to change by volunteer interest.

Please call us if you have any questions about our program schedule!

View the current availability.

Summer Registration Timeline

Registration Details

To register, you’ll need your group typetotal number of youth and adults, session date and location, and a $60 deposit per person.

What is priority registration?
  • From October 1-31, volunteer groups can register with their top three to five choices of session for the summer.
  • In early November, all priority-registered groups will receive their session placement. Once all priority groups are placed, sign-ups open to be first-come, first-served.
  • With the priority registration model, 97% of groups typically recieve either their first or second choice of session. It also means SSP can ensure consistent volunteer numbers across weeks, help staff plan project completion timelines, and improve the volunteer experience on site!
  • If you have extenuating scheduling circumstances that truly limit you to only one location and week, you can indicate this when signing up during the priority period.
How to register:
  • All sign-ups are completed on MySSP, our online registration and volunteer portal.
  • If you represent a new group, complete the New Group Login Request form. If you are a new liaison for a group that already attends SSP, email Veronica Russell to update your account.
  • Meet with your volunteers to select a session before registering.
  • Determine the total number of spots your group wants to reserve.
    • Be sure to confirm there are enough spaces available for your group during your session of choice.
    • Combined sessions require a ratio of one adult per three youth (1:3).
    • Groups of any size may register, though most Combined sessions are capped at 60 total volunteers.
  • To register, you’ll need your group typetotal number of youth and adults, session date and location, and a $60 deposit per person.
  • Your deposit must be received at the time of registration via credit or debit card online for your group’s spots to be reserved.
    • We highly suggest collecting deposits from families in advance to encourage financial investment in the trip, and avoid drops later in the year.

Download the 2020 Summer Information Packet.

[invicta_calltoaction primary_line=”SSP’s Group Registration Portal” secondary_line=”Priority registration for summer 2020 will be open October 1-31. If you are your group’s liaison, click the button to login to your MySSP account.” label=”MySSP Login” url=”http://myssp.sierraserviceproject.net/” target=”_blank” size=”medium” color=”gold” icon=”icon-calendar” style=”style_4″][invicta_calltoaction primary_line=”New to SSP? Welcome!” secondary_line=”If your group is new to SSP, create a login request to so that you can register your group for SSP’s programs.” label=”New Group Login Request” url=”http://myssp.sierraserviceproject.net/login_requests/new” target=”_blank” size=”medium” color=”green” icon=”icon-group” style=”style_4″ secondary_line_keywords=”create a login request”][invicta_calltoaction primary_line=”Update Your Group’s SSP Liaison” secondary_line=”SSP has one primary contact with your group. To update your SSP liaison, email Veronica.” label=”Update Liaison” url=”mailto:veronica.russell@sierraserviceproject.org” target=”_blank” size=”medium” color=”blue” icon=”icon-envelope” style=”style_4″ secondary_line_keywords=”primary,contact,Veronica”]

Who Participates

Youth Groups

As an ecumenical Christian service program, SSP encourages middle and high school youth groups, school groups, families, and individuals to participate. SSP fosters affirming spaces and welcomes volunteers of all backgrounds, races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, and abilities. The only requirements to attend SSP are a willingness to serve and openness to new experiences.

No group is too small! One youth and one adult makes a group. Some churches send multiple groups to different SSP sessions due to their schedule limitations or because they have a large group.

Eligibility: Who Can Participate?

This program is designed for incoming 6th graders in fall 2020 through 2020 high school graduates. Mature youth will be given opportunities to lead and mentor younger youth throughout the week. Groups that comprise of only middle or high school youth are also welcome to attend Combined sessions, with the understanding that there will be youth of many ages present, as well as a mixed level of SSP experience.

Number of Participants Each Week

We are dedicated to creating a positive group environment, limiting our Combined sessions to 60 participants each. Most Combined sessions are split between about one-third middle school and two-thirds high school youth.

Service Work

For the most part, we work on the homes in the communities we serve. The type of work includes roofing, building wheelchair ramps and porches, painting and other general home repairs. No construction experience is needed, and you’ll be amazed at all of the work that your youth teams complete!

Occasionally, our teams work on churches, community buildings, and schools in the communities that host us. In addition, we will sometimes participate in other types of community service activities like community gardens when there is a need and the work is appropriate for youth work teams.

Most projects take longer to complete than your week at SSP so you may see the beginning, middle or end of a project.

We upload photos regularly on our facebook page, follow us to stay connected!

Safety and Supervision

Safety of every type – physical, spiritual, and emotional – is our top priority. We want each youth to have the best possible experience so we create an environment dedicated to safety, adequate rest, nutritious meals and snacks, and lots of emotional and spiritual support.

Each week begins with hands-on tool training before anyone begins service work.

SSP Staff

Site locations are staffed by a team of mature young adults and are made of a Site Director, Spiritual Life Coordinator, three Construction Team members and two Food Service Coordinators. Three sites this summer will have an extra staff member. They are trained and present at the site for the entire summer, working with the community to provide quality service opportunities.

Staff participate in a ten-day training which consists of hands-on job specific training, sessions on leadership, conflict resolution, youth ministry, and cultural sensitivity among others. This training equips these young adults to be prepared for difficult situations that they may encounter over the summer.

Learn more about SSP’s young adult staff.

Adult Counselors

In addition to our staff, youth are accompanied by adult counselors in a ratio of one adult for every three (1:3) youth.

Counselors must be at least 23 years old and be chosen for maturity and role modeling capabilities; those younger than 23 must be cleared and approved by the SSP office in advance. All counselors are expected to take online training and undergo a national criminal background check before participating.

Learn more about adult counselors.


At site, groups will need to provide their own transportation to and from the work sites each day. Because work teams are composed of six to eight people, minivans and cars work best. Our policy and the law requires that seat belts be used by all occupants. 15-Passenger vans have been shown to be very unsafe. We strongly urge you not to use these vehicles.

Van Rental Information

SSP has been able to arrange for a special discounted rate with Enterprise Rent-A-Car for the rental of vans for your trip to SSP this summer. If you choose to take advantage of this, you need to remember that this arrangement is between you and Enterprise Rent-A-Car. SSP can take no responsibility for reservation problems or any other problems that might arise.

To take advantage of these rates

Call: 1-800-Rent-A-Car or 1-800-736-8222
Or visit www.enterprise.com
Corporate Account Number: 30C2900

On the Enterprise website, all on the first page, enter your dates and location as well as the Corporate Account Number under “Account Number.” This will give you the availability and rates for all vehicles.


Regardless of where you rent your vans, we strongly advise you to call one week ahead of your pick-up date and the day before to verify that your reservation is intact and your vehicles are there.


The fees cover all accommodations, meals, program supplies, building materials and tools, a T-shirt for each participant and supplemental health insurance (excess coverage only).

Deposit: $60 per participant

Due at registration to reserve spaces

Second Payment: $220 per participant (at most sessions)

Due March 1st

Final Payment: $135 per participant (at most sessions)

Due June 1st


In 2019, SSP awarded over $80,000 in scholarships to almost 500 participants in need. We hope to do the same in 2020. Our commitment is that no youth should be excluded from participating due to lack of financial means. Scholarship awards will be used to lower the second and final payment by the needed amount. Scholarship applications can be found on the downloads page.

2020 Summer Downloads

Visit our downloads page for more resources.

Typical Combined Daily Schedule

Most days at SSP consist of a full day of service work, team building activities, singing, sharing homemade meals together, reflecting on the experience, and a spiritual program centered around the summer theme.

While this a general template you can expect, the schedule may vary depending on site logistics.

  • 7:00 AM Wake up and get ready (the day may start earlier depending on the site and heat index)
  • 7:30 AM Spiritual awakening (optional) to get centered for the day
  • 8:00 AM Breakfast
  • 8:30 AM Community service opportunities, lunch crew packs sandwiches, teams head to work site.
  • 9:30 AM Arrive at work site, begin service work
  • Noon Lunch and Spiritual Sandwiches (group discussion) at work site
  • 1:00 PM Resume service work
  • 4:00 PM Return to site, clean and store tools, shower, free time. Free time is spent at the location where we are housed and includes sports, crafts, cards, snacks and hanging out with new friends!
  • 5:00 PM Staff/counselor meeting – adults meet with staff to discuss joys, concerns, and plans for the next 24 hours.
  • 6:00 PM Dinner
  • 6:30 PM Community service opportunities (cleaning the kitchen and bathrooms, etc.)
  • 7:00 PM Song time and evening program – team building activities, mail, sharing work site reports, and spiritual programs related to our summer theme. At least one evening is always devoted to learning about the local community.
  • 9:00 PM Free time. Volunteers prepare for bed.
  • 9:45 PM Evening devotional led by a work team
  • 10:00 PM Lights out. We have separate sleeping areas by gender. The work we do is hard labor and everyone needs to get a good night of sleep.

There will be several opportunities during your week at SSP to reconnect with everyone from the group you are attending with, even if they are not on your  work team. The time this takes place will vary by location, due to program and community limitations at each site.

Sample High School Weekly Schedule

While this a general template you can expect, the schedule may vary depending on site logistics.


Arrive 2:00 to 4:00 PM, orientation, staff / adult counselor meeting, assign work teams


Hands-on tool training, half day service at work site, evening program


Service at work site all day, cross-cultural evening program


Adventure Wednesday: community service activity as a full group or activities to learn about the site location, recreation in the afternoon and BBQ dinner, evening program


Service at work site all day, off-site evening program


Service at work site all day, closing celebrations


Pack up, clean site, receive bookmark with website to take online evaluation survey, breakfast, closing circle, depart.