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Faith-based Camps Connect Faith and Fun

Campers are hands, feet and labor making a difference in mission camps

Campers help with morning missions and return to Twinlow for fun.

More than 300 high school youth and adults come to Idaho Mission Project camps at Twinlow with youth groups to be the hands, feet and labor, serving organizations like Habitat for Humanity, Elder Health, Elder Services, Second Harvest, Catholic Charities and Children’s Village.

Groups come from different parts of the country to serve in the community as a mission experience, said Tyler Wagner, director of the Twinlow Camp and Retreat Center, operated by the United Methodist Church (UMC) near Rathdrum, Idaho.

“We are the only camp doing mission projects in the Pacific Northwest Conference of the UMC,” he said.

From 40 to 50 come each week for eight weeks to this opportunity for campers to put their faith into action. Every day the campers do different projects. Some help repair or paint houses that need work.  Some sort food in an air-conditioned warehouse.

They break in the early afternoon or at dinner and return to Twinlow to be part of the camp community, which will include eight weeks of summer camps for all ages each week.

Twinlow has shifted to an intergenerational model, so campers can come based on their schedules, not when their age group is there, said Tyler.

“We also offer Community Day Camps, like vacation Bible school, bringing the camp experience to all ages at 12 area churches,” he said.

Tyler, who has been at Twinlow eight years, values being camp director because of how camp experiences “have a positive influence on the culture,” as well as changing with the culture.

Twinlow recruits in the local school district, but the majority of campers are from United Methodist congregations and their friends.

For information, call 208-352-2671 or visit

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