Red Bird Mission Work Camp

Each year, members of Dingmans Ferry United Methodist Church and the Barryville United Methodist Church participate in a one week work camp at the Red Bird Mission in Kentucky.

The Red Bird valley is an isolated area in the Appalachian Mountains where three of the poorest counties in America  come together.  The residents are cut off from many basic educational and medical services. Chronic poverty, lack of jobs, poor housing, and rugged mountainous terrain provide obstacles to a fuller life for the residents of this area.  The Red Bird Mission began in 1921 when two teachers and United Evangelical pastor John J. DeWall came to the mountains at the invitation of the community to build a school and dormitory. Over the years, the ministries have changed as community needs have changed. The Red Bird Mission strives to meet these needs through ministry in five areas:  Education, Health and Wellness, Community Outreach, Economic Opportunity, and Community Housing Improvement.

unnamed (4).jpgOur church is involved in the Community Housing Improvement. For one week in the summer (typically in July), our church members work with teams from other churches to do home repairs. Home repair tasks run the full gamut from replacing floors and installing stairs and handicap ramps, to painting and roofing. Many of our team members attend each year and bring their experience to new projects. Youth, ages 14 and up are an important part of our church team, and together with the adults, learn new skills and come away with a better understanding of service.

"Here's  how the work week goes. After travelling from PA on Saturday, you arrive on Sunday and have a nice time meeting and greeting your fellow campers. Bunks are assigned and after everyone settles in, a brief service is held in the meeting room. Bright and early Monday morning, you are given your assignment and after a big breakfast you are on your way. You might be shingling a roof, painting the school, installing a bathroom, or sorting clothes… there is a job for every skill level and talent. Wednesday is a day off to see the surrounding area. Every night when you return to camp there is a time of devotion followed by sharing in small groups. When you leave home, you think you are doing something huge and giving up a lot to help these people. Then you come home and you realize what you have given is a drop in the bucket… but what you’ve taken away with you is priceless. It’s a great opportunity to be part of something bigger than yourself."  -- Rob and Mary Balton


If you are interested in joining our Red Bird Mission this year, contact Pastor Doug Miller(

We love to have you join us in this important ministry.