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Learn & Serve Summer Experience

Summer 2024

Check back soon for our theme announcement!

What to Expect

Students will go through the full SIFAT student experience. Groups will arrive 2:00 p.m. Sunday afternoon and will pack up to leave Thursday morning following breakfast. During their time on SIFAT’s 176-acre campus, youth will engage in daily devotions, nightly worship and small groups. They will connect with one another to learn about their own leadership abilities as they participate in our challenge course. They will have a greater understanding of the world around them as they enter our Global Village for a culturally immersive experience, where they must find work to feed their “family” and pay their rent. Participants will purify their water, which they must walk to retrieve, and cook over an open fire. And during this simulation, they will start to understand how deep the web of poverty really is. Finally, our Global Feast will bring the statistics of world hunger and poverty to life and includes a debrief in our outdoor chapel.

Through all of this, we also teach youth and their leaders about appropriate technology and share stories of SIFAT graduates and their ability to bring change to communities through development and relationship building. On our final full day, groups will be a part of an off campus service project, followed by a night of fun and worship to celebrate what God is doing in our lives.

Our Summer Experience is created for youth groups and recommended for students preparing to go into the 7th grade through recently graduated seniors.

Bring your group to SIFAT this summer! It’s a new adventure that we hope will have a lasting impression on the lives of all participants.

(Remember, students will have the opportunity to visit The SIFAT Village Store multiple times while at SIFAT. Here, they can purchase snacks, drinks and souvenirs from around the world.)

Summer 2024 Dates

Week One June 2-6 Full!
Week Two June 9-13
Family Weekend June 13-15
Week Three June 16-20
Week Four June 23-27
Week Five July 7-11
Week Six July 14-18
Week Seven July 21-25

Ask about our family weekend on June 13-15 (more details at the bottom of this page), overnight and three-day options!

How to Register

While primarily church youth groups register for Summer Experience, we can accommodate individual participants and families, too. Get in touch with us for information about options for individuals and families.

Cost – $280 per person (10% per person discount if you register by Jan. 15, 2024)

We ask for a 20% deposit to be paid and for your signed contract to be returned to confirm any tentatively scheduled retreat/summer experience.

How To Sign Up? Fill out our interest form, call 256.396.2015, e-mail

Family Weekend Details

Designed for families of all ages, our Family Experience provides challenges that will help your family grow in your relationships with one another and will create a bigger picture of what our world looks like, as well as how you can help meet the needs of those with less resources.

Why should you bring your family to SIFAT?

  • Learn about other cultures and create gratitude for daily living
  • Learn skills like fire building, water filtration, brick making
  • Learn leadership and communication in our Challenge Course

Dates: June 13-15
Cost: $250 for two people (additional $65 per family member)


Thursday – (1 p.m. arrival )  Intro to SIFAT, Challenge Course, Worship
Friday –  Fire Building Workshop, Hike to SIFAT’s Global Village, Village Life, Worship
Saturday – (3 p.m. departure)  Village Tour, Lunch*, Village Store, Pack

Meals are provided and/or are part of programming experiences.

*Families can participate in a service project together after lunch with a later departure.

What is Village Life?

This simulation helps participants empathize with our brothers and sisters living in poverty. Families are given a village house to represent your family group. Meals are cooked over a fire, and families gather and filter water, find local work to make money and buy/barter food in our market. At the end, SIFAT staff debrief about Village Life and share some of SIFAT’s stories that we have encountered through our international work.