About RWC

About Rockford Work Camps

Quick Facts

LOCATION  Rockford, IL - Population         150,100

WHEN  Work camps run throughout year with most groups coming in June, July, and August.

WHO  Teens through adults are welcome!

        Rockford Work Camps (RWC), a project of Rockford Urban Ministries in Rockford, IL, is a faith-based, non-profit organization providing volunteer labor to help better our city’s low-income neighborhoods, food pantries, homeless shelters, and environmental protection areas. All sizes of church, school, and community groups from across the nation take a week of their summer to make a positive difference in our community through the work that they do and the relationships they build with the residents they serve.

        RWC projects include demolishing and renovating housing for low-income families and providing services to neighborhood soup kitchens, food banks and pantries, homeless shelters and youth outreach programs.  RWC also hosts an environmental work camp, restoring a prairie wetland. Since its inception, RUM has hosted over 230 groups that have logged more than 19,600 hours of service. 

Who Can Come?

        We welcome anyone age 13 and older that has the ability to work 5 to 7 hours per day at physically demanding jobs in any weather.  Each group must provide one adult leader for every 5 youth.  There is no limit to the number of volunteers who may register.

Where Do We Stay?

        Groups stay in area churches and sleep on the floor - bring comfy bedding! Alternatives are available, but may cost more. Host churches will provide kitchen facilities including refrigerators, pots, pans, food storage, and other cooking utensils but groups are responsible for their own meal preparations. Most churches are air-conditioned (you lucky campers!) and one church features a gym, showers, and private chapel. Offsite showers are also available.


        Groups are responsible for travel to and from Rockford as well as travel to and from work sites. Vehicles must have seat-belts for every passenger.

Insurance and Medical Releases

        Each group must provide proof of accident insurance that covers the stay in and the travels to and from Rockford.  Groups may provide proof of coverage for the entire group or for each individual group member.  Also, each member must submit liability release forms two weeks prior to arrival.  It is also suggested that leaders obtain medical information and release forms from the parent or guardian of each youth that participates.  Finally, each group member should have a current tetanus shot.

Fees and Payment

        Work camps fill up on a first-come, first-serve basis and a group's place on our calendar will be reserved only upon receipt of a non-refundable registration fee. 

        Non-refundable registration fee: $200

        Participant fee:  $22 per person, per workday

       Host church fee: $5 per person, per night

Groups are encouraged to bring donations for their worksite. 


        RWC’s Crew Leader (CL) will be the group's main source of information and assistance.  The CL will meet the group upon arrival and oversee the camp experience as the week progresses.  Also, groups will have a contact person from their host church and the non-profit being served.


        RWC schedules most week-long work camps during the months of June, July, and August; however, groups are welcome to come any time of the year!  Groups should plan to arrive Sunday evening and be packed up by 9:00 a.m. the following Saturday.  Typical week-long camps work Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. with an hour for lunch and devotions (times can vary). Spring and fall week or weekend-long camps are also available upon request. 

Give us a call!