Welcome back to the Hope Rising blog!

World Race, World Race: Gap Year, and Semesters by World Race mission teams are currently on the field serving alongside long-term strategic ministry partners. Our participants are partnering with local ministries to serve others and share the love of God!

This week, Emma Austin, Mackenzie Tkach and Anjali Joy show us what it looks like to partner with Mission of Hope in the Dominican Republic. They are serving others through evangelism, house visits, and community service. Check it out!


7:30am - Rise and Shine! At 7:30, everyone makes their way to the dining area for breakfast. Some get up earlier than this to workout, get ready, have quiet time, and more, while others savor every last minute of sleep they can get before it’s time to eat. Others get up much earlier if it’s their day to make breakfast for the squad! We’ve gotten creative with our meals here, trying different things like breakfast sandwiches and baked oatmeal. After we eat, everyone scrambles to get dressed, pack their bags, and get the lunch coolers on the bus before it’s time to go!

8:30am - Skirts? Check. Water bottles? Check. Masks and hand sanitizer? Check. Time to load up the bus! We start our ministry days early here and try to roll off campus at 8:30. Since we work with different churches and communities each week, our bus rides can be anywhere from twenty minutes to over an hour long! A long bus ride is such a blessing though, because it becomes a time to worship using a portable speaker, hang out with squadmates and translators, or even sneak in a few more minutes of sleep. 

9:30am (ish) - Once we arrive at ministry, we unpack the bus and make our way to the church we are working with. Usually this is just down the street or up a flight of stairs, but we’ve even had to hike up a mountain with all our coolers and packs to make it to the church we were working with once. If it’s our first day with that church, we’ll usually spend some time getting to know the pastor before we pray, split up into our teams, and get ready to go out into the community. Then it’s time for SMT!  

SMT, or strategic ministry time, looks like house visits on the surface; however, there are so many layers to this. It’s a time to build intentional relationships, start conversations, learn about the community, get to know/encourage people, and share the gospel. SMT also leaves room for physical needs to be surveyed and met in an organic way. Mission of Hope, the ministry we partner with here, also does medical missions and distributes food and water filters. 

SMT, while sometimes uncomfortable, has been a fruitful time for our squad. 

12:00pm - Lunch! Thanks to all the walking around in the Dominican heat, most of us are usually so ready for a chance to sit down and eat by the time noon rolls around. We eat the classic World Race lunch: peanut butter and jelly sandwiches! Other additions may include: apples, granola bars, or a bag of chips. 

1:00pm - Back at it with SMT! We’ll go to different houses and sometimes different areas than we were at in the morning.

3:30pm (ish) - Time to head home! We all load back on the bus and ride back to the base. Like the morning bus ride, this is a much needed time to cool down, talk to the Lord, worship, and reset; we’ve found that SMT is often pretty draining spiritually. 

4-4:30pm - We’re back! First priority (for many of us girls, at least) is to change out of our skirts. Then, we have free time until dinner! Some will start getting dinner ready, others will work in the coffee shop on base, others will work out, write blogs, do laundry, or just chill.

6:00pm - Dinner time! Like breakfast, we’ve started to get pretty creative with our meals here, since we cook all of our own food. We’ve had tacos, mac and cheese, spaghetti, chicken caesar wraps, and more. We gotta get our veggies in too, so salad is a must with every meal! During dinner, our squad loves having intentional time with each other, whether that’s one on one conversations, or time with our teams.    

7:00pm - After dinner is all cleaned up, we have free time for the rest of the night. This looks like: playing games or hanging out together, time with the Lord, or maybe even hitting the hay early to get extra rest. Some nights we have scheduled, optional events after dinner like worship or what we call “round table discussions”. Round table discussions are every Wednesday night, and they’re basically a safe space to have open discussions about issues that are important to us as a squad. 


There you have it! Are you interested in being a part of the World Race: Gap Year? Applications are closing soon!

Apply here by May 5th to grow closer to God, serve others and fulfill the Great Commission!