Founded in 1975, Sierra Service Project was inspired by and modeled after Appalachian Service Project.  Originally founded by several United Methodist Church ministers, SSP is now an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.  We maintain a close affiliation with the United Methodist Church, but we also draw participants from a number of other denominations.

SSP’s “traditional” youth program is centered around youth groups, most young people are part of a group. SSP believes that young people develop a strong and deep understanding of God’s gifts and God’s grace through the direct experience of being in service to others.

The Early Days of SSP

1969
Appalachia Service Project (ASP) established; Rev. Tex Evans brings 50 volunteers to Frakes, Kentucky for 4 weeks.
1975
ASP sponsors satellite operations in California, Alabama, Texas, and North Dakota (all except CA have since closed).
1976
Sierra Service Project's first summer; 1 site operated with leadership by Rev. Dave Wolf and Floyd McKeithen.
1978
SSP operates 2 summer sites.
1979
Incorporates as an independent nonprofit.
1993
Paige Eaves is hired as the first full time Executive Director.
1994
Expands to 3 summer sites; operates 1st site outside of California (Arizona).
1998
Expands to 4 summer sites.
2001
Young Adult Program piloted. Rick and Toni Eaton are hired as Executive Director and Administrator.
2002
1st tool trailer purchased.
2003
Honduras Homebuilding Program established. Expands to 5 summer sites.
2004
Urban Los Angeles program established.
2006
Associate Director hired. First Alternative Break in Los Angeles. Expands to 6 summer sites.
2008
Middle School Program established. Tijuana, Mexico Program piloted (only year).
2009
Project Consultant and Intern hired.
2010
Expands to 7 summer sites. 2,071 youth and adults participate in the Summer Program, highest ever.
2011
Weekends of Service established in Sacramento and Portland. Central American program moved to Guatemala.
2013
Partnership with Seeds of Learning in Nicaragua began. Bookkeeper hired.
2014
Combined Middle and High School Program and Individual Youth Program established. Communications Coordinator and Volunteer Coordinator hired.
2015
40th year of service to youth and adults! Phoenix Weekends of Service piloted.
2016
Rancho Cordova Neighborhood Beautification Program established in partnership with the city. First summer ever in the state of Washington.
2017
2nd year in Rancho Cordova (school year) and Spokane, WA. 5th summer in Tsaile, Chiloquin and Smith River consecutively.