Amidst stunning mountains and deep, shaded hollows, Appalachia is home to generations of proud families, many wrestling with the despair of extreme poverty. Our tripsters travel to eastern Kentucky repairing homes for those most in need. Will you travel with us to make a difference?


Learn more about our programs
Louisville Belize | Nicaragua 
Immersion Trips: Dates and Sample Trips

Please join us for a trip that will change your life! App-ImmersionTripDates

  • June 9-12, 2019 (FULL)
  • June 12-15, 2019
  • October 27-30, 2019
  • Create Your Own Week! (See Below)

Don’t see a date that works for you? View all our immersion trip dates or create your own immersion trip group! We work with families, churches, schools and other organizations to schedule immersion trips. Note: Group trips are often booked a year in advance.

To create your own group (20-25 people) to Appalachia, please contact Allison Ridenour at or (502) 459.9930 if you are interested.

What to Expect as a Tripster in Appalachia?

While in Appalachia you will work side-by-side with home owners to repair homes or build additions like a wheelchair ramp or assisting with the emergency food pantry.

We encourage you to visit area attractions such as Jenny Wiley State Park, Natural Bridge State Park, Loretta Lynn’s Homeplace, enjoy local music at the Front Porch Pickin’ and more while learning the history of the area. SampleTrip-Auxier (PDF)

For more information, please contact Allison Ridenour at or (502) 459.9930.

For the Appalachia office, please call (606) 886.0709.

Who's Traveling with Us?
For more information about creating your own group immersion trip, contact Allison Ridenour at or (502) 459.9930.
February 24-March 1 Assumption High School, Louisville, KY
March 10-12 Northern Kentucky University, Highland Heights, KY
March 13-15 Holy Trinity School, Louisville, KY
March 17-20 LaGrange Rotary, Oldham County, KY
March 20-23 St. Patrick School, Louisville, KY
March 31-April 3 Tri-County Disciples, LaGrange, KY
May 8-12 St. Vincent de Paul, Rogers, AR
May 29-June 1 St. Matthew’s Parish, Mt. Vernon, IN
June 4-8 Conway, ARK Group
June 9-12 Ursuline Academy, St. Louis, MO
June 19-22 Our Lady of Lourdes, Louisville, KY
June 23-26 St. X High School, Louisville, KY
June 26-29 Sacred Heart Academy, Louisville, KY
July 7-10 St. Agnes Parish, Louisville, KY
July 10-13 St. Edward/St. Francis, Louisville, KY
July 17-20 Middletown Christian Church, Louisville, KY
July 21-24 Church of the Epiphany, Louisville, KY
July 24-27 Bellarmine University Alumni
July 31-August 3 St. Stephen Martyr Alumni
August 4-7 St. Bernadette Catholic Church, Prospect, KY
August 7-10 WE Families Kentucky
August 27-30 Ozark Catholic Academy, Tonitown, AR
September 5-8 Holy Spirit Parish, Louisville, KY
September 12-15 St. Mark’s United Church of Christ, New Albany, IN
September 18-20 Our Lady of Lourdes, Louisville, KY
September 25-27 Our Lady of Lourdes, Louisville, KY
October 3-6 Highland Presbyterian Church, Louisville, KY
October 6-9 Sacred Heart Model School, Louisville, KY
October 10-13 Pfrimmers Chapel, Corydon, IN
October 23-26 St. Patrick School, Louisville, KY
November 6-8 St. Mary Academy, Louisville, KY
Our Work in Appalachia
App-OurWork Our work in Appalachia began in 2002 when we sent our groups to volunteer at the Auxier Lifetime Learning Center. Charlie and Sue Schaffer began operating the center when Father Biding of the Christian Appalachia Project (CAP) relinquished control of the center to Charlie and Sue. In 2007, the Schaffers retired and handed over the operation to Hand in Hand. Since acquiring the property, Hand in Hand has continued to grow the home repair program which is our primary focus in Auxier. Tripsters stay at the Auxier Center, a renovated school building that also serves as an emergency food pantry for Auxi. Our center is near Prestonsburg, KY and exists to serve people in Floyd, Magoffin, Johnson and Martin counties.

The Auxier Center Programs include:

Home Repair Program
App-repairprogramHundreds of immersion trip volunteers travel with Hand in Hand to eastern Kentucky each year repairing homes. The repairs range from building wheelchair ramps for the disabled to replacing floors, roofs and plumbing in family homes. Over 600 volunteers go to Appalachia each year volunteering more than 12,500 hours.
Emergency Food Assistance for Auxier Residents

Provides emergency food assistance to approximately 75 families living in the Auxier community.

What's Next?
Lend a Hand Wall
App-LendaHandWallThe Lend A Hand Wall is where donors from every walk of life leave their handprints not only on the wall in Auxier, Kentucky, but also on the lives of those we serve. The wall, as shown on the right, represents more than $8,200 in donations by our 2015 immersion trip volunteers who have spent time working in Appalachia. This generosity enables our Auxier Center programs to continue to make a difference. Donate now.

+ Event Volunteer – Contact Darian for more information

+ Send us stories or photos – We’d love to hear from you! Contact Darian for more information

+ Volunteer Groups – Get a group together! Contact Allison for more information

Monetary Donation to the Food Pantry

Monetary donations to the food pantry allow us to purchase fresh produce and toiletries for our families. They having choices that are healthy for their families. Donate Now.

Where is Appalachia?


Serving Floyd, Martin, Magoffin and Johnson counties in Kentucky.

For more information on how to join this trip, contact Allison Ridenour at or (502) 459.9930.

Frequently Asked Questions

We know you will probably have questions, so please review these documents for more information.

Brochure • General FAQs

If you still have questions, please contact Allison Ridenour at or (502) 459.9930.


App-Test1“On my way in to work this morning, I couldn’t help but think about the folks in Auxier.  It’s a big world out there – with oceans full of starfish – but it was inspiring to take one step with all of you in making the world a little better place to live.” – Denis R.

“This immersion trip experience was one of the best experiences of my life and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I feel so lucky to be a part of it. I will remember the relationships I built and the differences I made for the rest of my life!”    – Rachel B.

“Working with the family was a great privilege – their gratitude was humbling.” – David Z.

“I had never used power tools, so it was empowering to be able to learn that new skill. It was so wonderful to feel like we made a difference…[We were invited] into their home and I loved to learn about them and their family. I made new friends and cannot wait to go back!”    – Clare B.

“The experience was everything and more that I hoped it would be. I look forward to participating in another trip in the future.”   – Susan L.

“Thankful for the laughs, the love, and the time I got to spend with these individuals. Thank you, Auxier, for reminding me what it means to serve and what it means to live.” – R. Hughes

“Feeling very thankful for everyone who accompanied me on such an incredible journey. From the creeks to the hollers and back, Auxier, KY you have all our hearts.” – D. Bradley
Thank you for traveling with us! Please tell us about your experience on to Appalachia by taking a quick survey. Your feedback is crucial to our program development.

Don’t forget to leave your contact information at the bottom the survey so we can address your comments if needed and to stay in touch with upcoming information about Hand in Hand.