JwX Appalachia

JusticeworAppalachia (West Virginia)


10 18 811 6 169

  • This is a great choice for those with some previous service immersion and away-from-home experience!
  • Our Appalachia programs offer a rural experience for participants
  • June 17-23 (Dunlow Community Center, Dunlow, WV – closed group)
  • July 29-August 4 (Pipestem, WV – limited space)
  • Participants must have completed 10th-12th grade in 2017-2018 school year
  • Transportation to the host sites and local service sites is provided by minivans
  • Lodging will vary by program week; see lodging info in FAQs below for details
  • 32-48 participants per week (will vary by week)
  • Price per person varies by program & covers all expenses except food during travel days

Appalachia FAQs

What is the typical schedule of a day in Appalachia?

As scheduled, Appalachia participants will meet at the Center for FaithJustice CASA in Lawrenceville at approximately 6:30am on the first day of the program week (time varies for each location). Because the drive to WV can take up to 11 hours of travel (for the furthest WV program location), each van will make the necessary stops for breaks and meals along the way. Participants are scheduled to arrive at their host site in Appalachia on Sunday evening around dinner time. Timing for departure from Appalachia on Saturday will be similar, anticipating an arrival back to the CASA in Lawrenceville around 6:00pm. Participants will be encouraged to call their parents when they are about an hour away to arrange for pick up. Travel from the CASA to WV and back, as well as locally in WV, will be in mini vans driven by our program staff for the week.

Upon arrival at the host site, students will unpack and have dinner. The first evening of all programming consists of a tour of the host facility, an introduction to the week’s events, staff introductions, icebreaker/community building activities and discussions, and then conclude with prayer and reflection. A typical weekday in Appalachia looks like the following:

  • 7:00 am – Rise and Shine!
  • 7:30 am – Breakfast
  • 8:00 am – Morning Prayer
  • 8:30 am – Depart for Service Sites
  • 12:00 pm – Lunch
  • 3:00 pm – Return to host site
  • 3:30 pm – Community Building and Recreation / Showers
  • 5:30 pm – Dinner
  • 6:15 pm – Evening Activities tying faith to action/service to social justice
  • 9:00 pm – Free Time
  • 9:45 pm – Evening Prayer
  • 10:15 pm – Bed Time

As the above schedule outlines, participants wake up for breakfast and Morning Prayer. After prayer, participants depart with assigned service groups to complete service at an assigned site. While there, students work on a service project, break for lunch to discuss the morning’s experience, resume their service experience, and at around 3:00pm return to the host facility. Upon arrival at the host facility, participants take part in recreational free time, which consists of games and activities led by the program staff.

After dinner, participants will join in a variety of dynamic presentations and interactive experiences that introduce them to varying faith, service, and justice themes, particular to the Appalachian experience. Participants will have daily opportunities to reflect on daily experiences, share with peers, and learn about ways in which they can live out the faith through service to others.

Participants will also have many opportunities to participate in engaging faith experiences in prayer, reflection, and music, as well as some free time to bond with the group. Following evening prayer each evening, students head off to bed.

Note: Depending on programming content, each evening’s schedule may vary. Times are not concrete, just typical for programming days in WV. Programming may include speakers, hikes and other activities that would affect the schedule shown above.

What does JusticeworX Appalachia cost?

JusticeworX Appalachia is price varies depending on location. The cost includes a fee paid directly to the local contacts to prepare our service sites, materials, tools, food, etc.

Program costs cover 24-hour supervision and instruction from a team of facilitators, all meals (Sunday dinner through Saturday breakfast), transportation to and from West Virginia as well as to and from service sites throughout the entire trip, housing, and programming materials. Participants will only need money for fast-food during travel to and from WV.

Service in Appalachia is manual and labor-intensive, and most likely will include building/refurbishing homes, building a ramp or deck, gardening/yard work, painting, cleaning, sorting food at the food pantry and much more.

Where do participants stay? What do sleeping arrangements look like? Is it safe?

Lodging site for Week 1: Dunlow Community Center, Dunlow, WV

Website: www.cabwaylingochapel.com/new-center.html

JusticeworX Appalachia 2013 was privileged to be part of the building of this wonderful community center, completed during 2014. The group stayed at the Center first in Summer 2015, and we’re happy to be back again this year. One gender will sleep at the community center, one at the former senior center next door (just across the yard). Both will shower in gender-separate shower rooms at the Center, which have private stalls.

Students will be given a cot or air mattress for sleeping, provided by either DCC or JwX.

Sleeping: Carpeted floor; one gender will sleep at the Community Center and one group at the church/previous senior center (on the same property). All participants are encouraged to bring a twin-sized air mattress for comfort.  Linens not provided.

Showers: Showers at Community Center with individual stall Sleeping: Red Cross-provided cots in one large space for males, one for females. Linens not provided.


Lodging site for Week 7: Folklife Center, Pipestem, WV

Website: http://www.folklifecenter.org/

This will be our third year at the Folklife Center, and we are very happy to be returning to this location.

The Folklife Center features a beautiful 60 acre campus with 9 buildings including a dining hall, 3 dormitories, a chapel, a library, tool shed, director’s house and barn. In addition, the center features a sizable stage in a natural amphitheater, a playground, a blacksmith’s shed and a picnic shelter.

Their dining hall features a fully stocked utility kitchen, tables and seating for 100, couches and a fireplace. 

More information can be found on their website. Sleeping and shower facilities will be separated by gender.

Sleeping: Separate dormitory cabins for males and females.

Showers: Separate shower facilities for males and females.

What are the departure and arrival times? What does transportation involve?

Departure will be from our Lawrenceville offices at approximately 6:30am on Sunday of the program week.  Participants are responsible for their own transportation to the departure site. JusticeworX staff will transport participants in insured vans to WV.

The estimated arrival time at the lodging site is between 5:00pm and 6:00pm, depending on traffic. Each van and driver will stop as often as necessary, including for meals along the way.

What are the specific service site locations?

JusticeworX Appalachia service sites are arranged in partnership with community advocates for the poor in the region. Participant work groups are then assigned a specific site for the entire week, typically the home of a family in the area, a community building or assisting with a local program such as a youth camp or food bank.

Projects will consist of many different things, but mainly manual labor including building, cleaning, painting, gardening, sorting food, etc.

What do participants need to bring?

NOTE: There is limited space in our rental vans for both people and luggage. It is very important that participants PACK LIGHTLY. It is strongly encouraged that participants only bring what is included on the packing list. Simple living is highly encouraged during the week, especially in terms of packing material possessions.

It is also good to note that summers in Appalachia are hot and humid. When packing, remember to choose clothing that you would want to wear in 90+ degree weather. Please bring appropriate attire, no spaghetti strap tank tops or short shorts (shorts must be no shorter than 3″ above the knee).

NOTE:  There is little to no cell reception except for AT&T customers. The Team Leader of the week will have an AT&T phone for emergencies, and parents will have our emergency hotline number.  Please do not plan on hearing from your child throughout the week. This is a true immersion experience, which many students tell us is both a challenging and one of the most beneficial parts of the week.  Remember, on a trip like this, no news is good news!

Packing List:

  • Pillow and pillowcase
  • Bed linens/sleeping bag
  • Work clothes: closed toed shoes, jeans/pants that can get dirty/ruined, t-shirts with sleeves
  • Clothes to change into after work sites and showering (tank tops and sandals are fine for evening; no spaghetti straps, exposed bra straps or midriffs, or inappropriate words/logos, please!)
  • Toiletries
  • Journal
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug spray
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Reusable lunch bag
  • Healthy snack to share with the group
  • Work gloves for yourself
  • Money for breakfast and lunch on the way to Appalachia, and breakfast and lunch on the way home the following weekend

Contact Mare Ernesto for more information!