Summer volunteers who make life-changing adventures possible
Applications for Summer 2023 are available now!
Serving on Summer Staff is a dynamic and rewarding experience that many return to year after year. These volunteers truly make it possible for campers to embark on life-changing adventures, and the position is everything but boring. Summer Staff will learn new skills and spend their summer creating fun, safe, and challenging environments for campers to learn about Jesus.
After training is completed, a skills assessment will be given to determine abilities, interests, and growth potential. Responsibility, when given appropriately, is a tool that yields maturity. Full-time staff members at Camp Bighorn will help young leaders discover their giftedness and provide opportunities to practice these gifts within the body of Christ.
June 4th, 2023 - August 16th, 2023
Training + Eight Weeks of Camp + Staff Retreat
Summer Staff should arrive at Camp Bighorn on June 4, 2023, and training will begin the following morning. This training is mandatory, as it is a key component in preparing Summer Staff for the weeks ahead. In order to be accepted, you must be available, committed, and fully present for the dates specified above. If your circumstances happen to change after being accepted, please contact your supervisor at Camp Bighorn as soon as possible (parents should report on behalf of minors). Some circumstances may include sickness, family emergencies, etc.
Technical Adventure Coordinators (TAC)
Two adventure blocks are scheduled for each day of camp. TACs provide support, and in some cases, lead these adventures alongside an intern or Bighorn staff member. Activities include white water rafting, rock climbing, standup paddle boarding, canoeing, kayaking, challenge course initiatives, and aerial adventure park games.
Everyone loves a good meal, and it is no small feat to prepare one for large groups of hungry campers. Every Summer Staff volunteer will serve at least one week on kitchen staff, helping to prepare food, set the dining room, and wash dishes. This is a great time to learn some new recipes and jam out to your favorite playlists.
This is your chance to wear out a good pair of work gloves. Spend the week doing lawn care, moving sprinkler systems, helping with repairs, and conquering anything else that needs to get done around camp. Basically, you get to ride in the back of a pickup with your crew all week while using sweet equipment.
All of our groups in the summer either have a host or facilitator. Hosts get to meet-up with their group each morning and guide them through each days lessons, adventures, meals, and evenings. Facilitator join their group to live in a cabin with them for the week as they guide them through the lessons, adventures, meals, and evenings.
Applicants must be 14 years or older by June 4th (Summer Staff Training begins June 4th). If you are 18 years or older, and would like to carry more responsibility throughout the summer, please consider applying to serve as a Summer Intern. Summer Staff who are 14 years old can be here 7 out of 10 weeks of the summer (June 4th - July 23rd).
The mission of Camp Bighorn is to embody the love of Jesus and develop Christ-honoring leaders. Summer Staff will regularly engage in spiritual conversations with campers, helping others to develop godly character and grow to become leaders for serving churches and reaching communities.
As a result, applicants are expected to give clear evidence of faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, and demonstrate spiritual maturity by a daily walk of faith and obedience. Summer Interns will encourage Summer Staff throughout the summer. The same intern will stay in a dorm room with 4-5 Summer Staff all summer, creating a small group for accountability, discipleship, and support.
The Summer Staff position is a very active, dynamic role, and volunteers must arrive in good physical health. Typical activities include hiking, belaying, swimming, climbing, lifting objects overhead, and carrying bulky equipment as far as one mile. While these activities are typical, volunteers may still be accepted even if they cannot perform one or more of these activities. For example, someone with good physical health might not be a confident swimmer. In this case, they might be accepted and asked to serve in land-based activities instead.
Applicants will also be required to complete a medical release form before arriving for Summer Staff Training on June 5th.
Attitudes, Attributes, and Habits
Summer Staff play a vital role in serving our guests, from food service to adventure leadership to bathroom cleaning and more. Running an adventure camp is fast-paced, and schedules could change on a moments notice. Volunteers should maintain a servants' heart, receiving new responsibilities with humility, joy, and kindness. Good leaders also know how to listen well and understand the needs of their people. Key attributes include preparedness, promptness, discernment, caring for safety, working with integrity, and employing wisdom often.
Summer Staff are responsible to fundraise $550 to help cover expenses while serving at Camp Bighorn. Asking for money can be vulnerable, and even scary, but this practice creates space for the Lord to meet our needs and ultimately build our faith. Past Summer Staff will agree; it's wonderful to see God provide and bring more people together as you step into a summer of ministry. Once accepted, an easy-to-share donation page will be set up in your name.
At Camp Bighorn, adventure means stepping into anything with an unknown outcome. For some, this means getting to the top of a climbing route. For others, it could mean putting on the equipment and attempting to trust it. "Challenge by Choice" is a baseline philosophy used to invite campers into challenge without forcing someone into fear or uncertainty. Creating a safe environment for campers is a top priority, and it is important to provide this opportunity for campers to try something new without coercing or pressuring them into it.
Beyond adventure safety, all volunteers 18 years or older will be required to complete a background consent form. Summer Staff spend a significant amount of time with minors, and this policy helps ensure all adults serving at Camp Bighorn are legally qualified.
It was a place where you could just open up and you wouldn't be made fun of or mocked. The environment at Bighorn was something I haven't found anywhere else, and it was amazing.
I was in an environment were other people have the same desire and love to serve the Lord. Anyone can thrive and you can truly feel that anything the Lord puts in your heart is possible.
Thank you, for allowing me to have this experience. I really needed it to mature in Christ. You’ve given me so much more than you know, and I just want thank you.
Flights To Missoula
If you're flying to Montana this summer, this website has helpful information on planning your trip to Missoula International Airport (MSO), the closest airport to Camp Bighorn.Missoula Flight Info
Two Commitment Options
June 4th - August 16th
Two weeks of Staff Training, eight weeks of Camps and celebratory Summer Staff Retreat
June 4th - July 23rd
Two weeks of Staff Training and five weeks of Camps
In some cases, applicants are unavailable for Staff Training due to school obligations, etc. These applicants are still encouraged to apply, but may be waitlisted. Please communicate in your application or with the front office if needing a few days of grace during the Staff Training schedule.
1. Read the application thoroughly and answer every question.
2. Sign the Camp Bighorn Statement of Faith, Staff Policies, and Staff Commitment Pledge.
3. Provide your three references with a link to the Summer Reference Form (emailed to you after submitting your application).
4. Commit to fundraising $550, due by May 21st, 2023 (easy-to-share donation link provided once accepted).
5. Submit your completed application by April 24th, 2023 (spots can fill quickly so apply early).
6. Prepare for a follow-up email to schedule a phone interview.
Support A Volunteer
Want to support one of these volunteers? Their service adds to a long history of ministry, and fundraising is one of the ways people in their communities can join in, too. Below you will find an alphabetized list of the Summer Staff and Summer Interns for 2022, each with a unique giving link.