Lexington is located between sandy white beaches to the east and rolling Appalachian Mountains to the west. Next Step students have an opportunity to engage in community transformation through home repair and relational ministry.


June 7 - 13

June 14 - 20

June 21 - 27

June 28 - July 3*

July 5 - 11

July 12 - 18

July 19 - 25

July 26 - August 1

August 2 - 8

* Sunday through Friday trip


In 2013, Next Step was invited by a group of local churches and nonprofits to join in a holistic approach to ministry. We are hosted for sleeping arrangements in Lexington, SC., but during the day we serve primarily in the West Columbia area. West Columbia is a city and commuter town in the suburban eastern sections of Lexington County and is a part of the greater Columbia, SC metropolitan area. There is about a 30 minute difference in location and it is near the downtown district as well as the South Carolina State House and Congaree Vista, known locally as “The Vista.”

Here in South Carolina we partner with local churches, organizations and ministries and look to them in order to know how to best serve this community. Our community partners are The Scooter Scott Project, Mission Lexington, Turner AME Church, Mt. Horeb UMC, and the Iglesia Del Nazareno Taller De Jesus Church. 

Next Step volunteers have simply become an extension and resource to these local partners through the efforts of work projects and relational ministry opportunities. These community leaders are committed to serving their neighbors in dignifying and uplifting ways, and desire to equip and empower individuals and families through giving a hand up rather than a hand out. In meeting the more immediate physical needs, our hope is that those we are serving alongside would come to know and experience the life changing love of Christ.



Local Church in Lexington

Located in the West Columbia. Their mission is to serve their community through church services, daily feeding programs, child development, health services, counseling, and summer kids programs. Next Step partners by sending volunteers to assist in the summer kids programs and by being a resource for home repairs.


Local Community Services

The story of Mission Lexington is one of compassion for neighbors in crisis. It began with the faith community seeking better ways to serve individuals and families faced with emergency needs for food, clothing and shelter. Next Step partners with ML  by volunteering at the mission and doing various upkeep tasks.


Christian Youth Program

Faith-based, Christ centered organization helping kids in the Lexington Community become future leaders of tomorrow. The SSP offers a variety of programs to the students as well as adults that assist and guide them in practical and spiritual ways, building them hope for a future. Next Step partners with the SSP through community events and home repairs.


Local church in Lexington

This church has extended their building as a home for all Next Step volunteers since 2014. A healthy and energizing partnership has been formed between Next Step and Mt. Horeb. Eager to work alongside this community, Next Step has admired the dedication of this church and their desire to create transformation in the surrounding communities.


Local Church in Lexington

Located in West Columbia. Their mission is to foster congregation care, provide summer feeding programs for children and teens, and intentionally love their community by simply being available. Next Step partners with this church through relational ministry during the summer by sending volunteers to help lead a half day VBS.




We’ve been told our worship experience is where summer camp meets mission trip. At Next Step, your students will create unforgettable memories and friendships while worshipping and growing together in their understanding of who Jesus is. Each evening will include great bands, challenging speakers and a powerful video series created and filmed exclusively for your mission trip.


Have you ever gone on a mission trip and been disappointed by the work projects? You’re left wondering— isn’t there something more we could have done? At Next Step, we have partnered with local community leaders to ensure that the projects are meaningful and alleviate vital building needs. Your students will work on projects such as full home builds, home additions, drywall, siding, flooring, wheelchair ramps, and more.


Do you ever wonder if your short-term mission trip really made a difference? At Next Step, students serve alongside local community members, churches and nonprofits, as we meet the needs of the community together. With our full-time staff living in the communities we partner with, and projects being selected by the community, you will be part of a movement in responsible short-term missions.


The trip is hosted at Mt. Horeb UMC. Guys and girls will be separated into different classrooms for sleeping arrangements. Sleeping will be on the floor so please bring a twin air mattress and bedding. There are bathrooms in the facility and a shower trailer on site with individual shower stalls. We eat and worship in the same space, so we welcome any help in changing over the space with tables and chairs each evening!
This mission site is bus and van accessible. Some groups choose to fly and then rent vehicles for the week. The nearest airports are the Columbia Metropolitan Airport (CAE) located just 25 minutes away, or Augusta Regional Airport (AGS) located just one hour away from Lexington.
Twin Size Air Mattress
Bedding & Pillow
Water Bottle
Insect Repellent
Swim Suit
Shower Sandals
Work Shoes
Work Clothes
Casual Clothes
Work Gloves
Safety Glasses
3:00-5:00 pm – Arrive to Mission Location
6:00 pm – Dinner
7:00 pm – Worship & Weekly Orientation
8:30 pm – Church Time, Small groups, Free Time
11:00 pm – Lights Out
7:00 am – Wake Up
7:15 am – Eat Breakfast & Lunch Preparation
8:00 am – Morning Devotional
8:15 am – Depart for Worksite & Begin Working
12:00 pm – Lunch & Devotion
1:00 pm – Resume Working
3:30 pm – Clean Up/Return
4:00 pm – Free time/Showers/Leader Meeting
6:00pm – Dinner
7:00 pm – Worship
8:30 – Church Time/Small Groups/Free Time
11:00 pm – Lights Out
8:00 am – Wake Up 
8:15 am – Eat Breakfast & Lunch Preparation
9:00 am – Morning Devotion
9:15 am – Leave for Free Day Activity
4:00 pm  – Shower Time/Free Time/Leader Meeting
6:00 pm – Dinner
7:00 pm – Worship
8:30 pm – Church Time/Small Groups/Free time
11:00 pm – Lights Out


When should I register for my trip?

Registration opens in July and will be available through early spring. To get your preferred dates, locations, and spaces, it is recommended to secure your spots sometime before October.

What is the min or max people per group?

For summer mission trips you must have a minimum of five participants to be eligible for a group. If you have less than five participants on your team, please contact our office. The maximum number of people will depend on location capacity and availability.

What is the adult to student ratio required?

Next Step Ministries asks each group to bring 1 adult for every 6 students.

Are background checks required?

Yes. Each church group is responsible for conducting background checks on each participant 18 years of age or older.

When will we find out what our work are?

Your group will learn about the work projects on the first night of your trip! Our staff will contact you 1-2 weeks prior to the trip to share updates and provide an adjusted tool list.

How are the trips staffed?

A Next Step Partnership Coordinator facilitates community partnerships, lines up projects, leads the summer staff, and coordinates other logistics such as lodging and accommodations. The trip itself will be facilitated by 8-12 energetic, mission-minded, and highly trained college interns. The site staff will include a construction team, worship team, speaker, meal coordinators, and administrative leaders to guide you through the week.

What if the trip I’m considering is already full?

Each location has a different max capacity, so please contact our office to learn more about spaces available. In the event we are fully booked for the trip you are interested in, we can put you on a wait list or help find alternative trip options. To avoid these delays, we recommend registering for your trip as soon as you can!

What is the payment schedule?

Payment for a Next Step Ministries mission trip is separated into a deposit and two scheduled payments:

  • Deposit - $50 non-refundable and non-transferable deposit per spot reserved due within 30 days of your trip registration date
  • March 15th Payment – 50% of remaining balance of trip cost due
  • May 15th Payment – 100% of remaining total balance of trip cost due

Is Next Step affiliated with a denomination?

No, we do not affiliate with a particular denomination. Next Step Ministries is an interdenominational organization and we partner with hundreds of churches from all different denominations on our mission trips. Please see our Statement of Faith to learn more about what we believe. In simple terms, we stick to the basics of the Gospel. Our foundation for ministry is to provide opportunities for students to connect and grow in a personal relationship with Christ.

How are the work projects selected?

Next Step Ministries works alongside community leaders, non-profit organizations, and the local church in order to set up work projects. Full-time Next Step Staff called Partnership Coordinators live and serve within the community year round and are well connected. Next Step collaborates with the community to plan the projects you will be working on in advance.

Will our group be paired with other groups?

You will most likely be attending a trip with 2-4 other youth groups. All groups will share sleeping quarters and we will have meals and worship together as a large group. Many of our mission site locations can accommodate for 80-100 volunteers each week. For work projects, we love to mix students, but also understand many groups prefer to stick together. Please let us know your preference and we will plan accordingly!

Is the mission trip safe?

Yes. Next Step Ministries exists to give middle school, high school, and college students an opportunity to explore their faith, experience God, and extend service to others on a mission trip. Students are our top priority and safety is always our primary concern. Thankfully, because of our long-term commitment and involvement within the community, we have developed many close relationships with local families and organizations. The community is familiar with Next Step and we’ve worked hard to humbly earn their trust and respect. Because of these close friendships we are the first to know if something out of the ordinary comes up or is unsafe.


Day or night, Next Step Ministries is happy to hear from you. Whether you have a question, comment or concern, please don’t hesitate to give us a call. As an additional resource, feel free to download this brochure for all your mission trip information in one place.

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