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Best Christian Gap Year Programs of 2024 & 2025

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by D.J. Morgan D.J. currently serves as EM's Creative & Marketing Director, helping connect volunteers to life-changing opportunities to serve and grow together on mission trips.

A Gap Year is way more than a break from normal life. It’s an opportunity to serve others, grow in your faith, and discover who God created you to be in the world.

Experience Mission’s IMMERSION Gap Year programs take teams of young adults (18-23)—from all across North America—to communities around the world. When you join a team, you step out of your comfort zone and open your eyes to people and places you’ve never known before. You experience real life in communities, living with host families and serving alongside local ministries and non-profit organizations. You say “Yes” to expanding your world in the best ways possible.

IMMERSION Gap Year participants are challenged and changed for the better.

If this sounds like something you’ve been yearning for, don’t miss your opportunity to join a team in 2024 and 2025. Explore EM’s best Christian gap year programs for next year, and find the best fit for you. Fill out an interest form to take the first step toward joining a 6, 9 or 10-month team!

EM’s 6 Distinct Gap Year Programs for 2024-2025:

Best Christian Gap Year Programs

1. 6-Month Africa

Join a team of college-age young adults who will serve and grow together in three unique African communities in South Africa, Lesotho, and Namibia. Work alongside local ministries and become a part of host families. You'll be challenged to see the world through a new set of lenses. Serve in a variety of ministry opportunities like teaching at schools in townships and squatter camps, working on the farm, connecting with host families across racial, social, and language barriers, or putting on programs for children and youth.

Explore the 6-Month Africa IMMERSION program



Best Christian Gap Year Programs

2. 6-Month Latin America

Join this 6-month international mission trip to Latin America and experience everything from the bustling city to the edge of the rainforest in the radically different cultures of Belize, Cuba, and Costa Rica. Adding this trip to your Gap Year will give you space to breathe, listen, and learn about who God created you to be in the world. Every week and every day of the trip looks different, so be ready to serve where you are most needed: teaching English, organizing kids' programs, working on the farm, or joining local church outreach initiatives.

Explore the 6-month Latin America IMMERSION program


Best Christian Gap Year Programs

3. 9-Month Belize / Africa

Travel on a Gap Year mission trip from the small towns of Belize to the squatter camps, coastal towns, and deserts of Africa. Start by fully immersing in the Spanish language and the life of the local church and schools. This laid-back way of life and ministry will help you slow down and learn to simply let God use you to make an impact through everyday routines and relationships. After a break for the holidays back home, this program takes off again for 6 months in Africa, split between South Africa, Namibia, and the small mountain country of Lesotho. You’ll walk away with a bigger picture of this diverse continent and the people who make it beautiful.

Explore the 9-Month Belize / Africa program


Best Christian Gap Year Programs

4. 9-Month South Africa / Latin America

Part one of this Gap Year takes your team to South Africa for three months of engaging with local ministries in both urban and rural settings. You’ll fall in love with this country and the people you meet and learn from on a daily basis. Part two is a full immersion into the life and rhythms of 3 Latin American communities that present you with a wide range of experiences and ways to serve others with your daily life. Soak up the sun (and the rain) while building meaningful relationships with your team, host families, and the people you meet along the way.

Explore the 9-Month South Africa / Latin America program


Best Christian Gap Year Programs

5. 10-Month Latin America-to-Africa

Grow in your understanding of God, yourself, and the world on a 10-month IMMERSION Gap Year to Cuba, Belize, South Africa, Namibia, and more! Discover entire communities of people living out their faith through tight-knit relationships, authentic worship, and meeting the needs of their neighbors. Live daily life with host families—farming, cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, going to church—and walk away with an understanding of what life and faith look like in a different part of the world. Take part in ministry opportunities like teaching at schools, connecting with host families across racial, social, and language barriers, and sharing your faith in authentic and meaningful ways. This program will help you grow personally and find clarity and purpose as you serve others and build real, authentic relationships with people around the world.

Explore the 10-Month Latin America-to-Africa program


Best Christian Gap Year Programs

6. 10-Month Africa-to-Latin America

Take a break from the pressure of academic life to learn and grow as a person on a 10-month IMMERSION Gap Year to Namibia, South Africa, Cuba, Costa Rica, and Belize. In Africa, participate in outreach ministries for children through sports, involvement in schools, home visits, and partnering with local missionaries. Expand your picture of Africa and gain valuable life experience volunteering in classrooms, visiting with residents in old age homes, sorting donations, delivering meals to neighbors, or leading VBS-style programs after school. In Latin America, serve where you are most needed, whether it's through teaching English, organizing kids' programs, working on the farm, joining local church outreach initiatives, or simply helping your host family make dinner. This is an opportunity to find clarity and purpose as you live and serve alongside a team of young adults from across the U.S.

Explore the 10-Month Africa-to-Latin America program

Start your journey toward an EM Christian Gap Year program today! Fill out a Gap Year Interest Form and a member of our staff team will help answer all your questions and figure out if an IMMERSION Gap Year is right for you.


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Explore All IMMERSION Programs