What is a Mission Trip? | Mission Direct

What is a Mission Trip?

You may have heard about mission trips from your social circle and want to know more. The idea can sound exciting and intriguing, but what exactly is a mission trip? Going on a mission might evoke ideas of adventure, challenge, and discovery.

When you go on a Christian mission trip, you’re going to explore new ideas and new cultures in ways not usually offered on a normal break. People who go on mission trips do so for many different reasons, whether it be for personal growth, to make a difference in a community, or to learn something outside of their everyday life experience.

Dedicating your life to helping people in need is one of the greatest aspirations of people in the Christian faith. That’s not always practical; taking years away from your home and family can’t always be done. Worry not, because you can take a short-term mission trip that will offer you:

  • Personal growth through demonstrating faith in practical ways
  • New insights through working with people of different cultures
  • Fresh experiences and activities
  • A broadening of your perspectives

All of which can be achieved from a short-term commitment that will change other people’s lives for the better.

In this article, we’ll explore what a mission trip is, where we can take you on your mission trip, and what type of activities you can expect to take part in. Read on to get a better understand of what you can expect from a mission trip.

What makes it a mission trip?

Traditionally, a mission would entail a person of the Christian faith moving to another part of the world to spread their faith through good deeds. Missions would go on for many years at a time and missionaries, those who went on a mission, would take their families with them.

This is a pretty daunting feat, and in our globalised world such drastic action isn’t always needed. With things like a job, family, and education to commit to, going on a short mission may be preferable whilst still achieving something incredibly positive and rewarding.

A mission trip will be a positive experience not only for those you go to help, but for you too. It will change and shape you in ways that nothing else can. You are going to make real and tangible differences to people and communities. This can be through your physical efforts in building programmes or by simply demonstrating your love and compassion to people in different parts of the world. Later in this article we’ll give you more details about the work and activities that you can do on your mission trip with Mission Direct.

Also built into the volunteering activities we organise is some rest and relaxation time. Depending on the country you go to, there will be chances to explore historic or cultural sites, local wildlife and nearby wonders during your fortnight long trip.

Where can I do a mission trip?

There are lots of examples of Christian mission trips going to developing countries in different parts of the world to do good work. With the desire to work in disadvantaged communities, leaving the comforts and relative wealth of Europe does seem logical, but it’s not always necessary.

There are plenty of regions in the world that don’t have the advantages that we may have had whilst living in a wealthy country. Our mission trips focus on countries and areas that need a helping hand; sometimes they have been ignored by their local government or there aren’t the resources available locally to be able to make a difference. This means that mission trips closer to home are just as valuable as going overseas.

In general, a short volunteering trip for your Christian mission will be linked to an existing project. This means, we partner with native organisations and some missionaries that already have a local network and knowledge base and are already running outreach to help their community break the poverty trap. That way, we ensure that you are doing work that is truly needed to help in their communities and is already known to be effective and supported locally. It also ensures sustainability and prevents dependency.

In whichever country you choose to take your mission to, you will likely find yourself working on community projects supporting:

  • House and community building or renovation
  • Hospital and clinic construction
  • School building and expansion
  • Rescue accommodation

The mission trips that we offer cover five continents. There are different options depending on the type of activities you are called towards and which communities that you feel suited to work in.


A mission trip to Africa is vastly rewarding, helping in disadvantaged communities – in both cities and rural areas that don’t always get support from their governments. There are a range of projects available with Mission Direct, located in:

  • The Gambia
  • Kenya
  • Malawi
  • Sierra Leone
  • Uganda
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Your volunteering could be building schools in Zimbabwe or assisting the elderly in Sierra Leone. In Africa, you will work with Christian organisations that are already established in communities, yet the voluntary work that you do is offered to all in need, regardless of their beliefs.


Cambodia a fast-developing country with plenty of potential to make a difference. In this country, your work will be with a very rural community of just 300 people, 10km from the Thai border. By helping to build a school, you’ll be giving them hope for the next generation – and for generations after that.  

The Americas

Doing your Christian mission with Mission Direct in the Americas means you can volunteer either in Brazil or the Dominican Republic. Projects here revolve around constructing or renovating homes for families and working with children to give them a brighter future full of hope. 


We work with a Christian organisation in Moldova, with projects to support disadvantaged and disabled children. This work is done through looking after children and supporting outreach facilities; working to renovate, or sometimes rebuild, facilities for local kids.

We also offer a three-day mission trip within the UK. Maybe your thoughts of a mission trip have always involved overseas travel, yet offering your time, skills, and compassion closer to home is equally important as a person in the Christian faith.  

Final Thoughts

Trying to understand what a mission trip is takes more than just looking for a ministry to assist. An important element of Christianity is helping those less fortunate than ourselves, embodying the idea of “love thy neighbour”. Going on a mission trip offers you one way to be able to volunteer where it’s most needed.

You will spend your mission working; usually constructing or DIY for a few hours in the morning on the build project and supporting community outreach projects in the afternoons. A mission trip is not like any trip you have ever been on, you are going to make a real difference in the lives of the people that you interact with; leave a long-lasting mark on the communities that you spend time within and return home with new relationships and bonds.  

Our mission trips can take you around the UK or to different continents and cultures. Each year we run hundreds of mission trips that depart at different times. Mission Direct has been organising these for sixteen years, working across many countries. We’ve seen first-hand the positive contributions that all of our volunteers have made, and are eager to continue this important and rewarding work.

If you’re interested in taking part on an upcoming mission trip, or want to find out more about donations and get involved, fill in this contact form to request a callback.

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