Working at Joy Ranch

So, you’re thinking about working at Joy Ranch this summer. Wonder what that’s all about?

  • Joy Ranch hires college-aged (18+ yrs-old) staff
  • A summer position lasts 11 weeks (May 28 to August 12, 2017)
  • It is a paid position - you receive a weekly stipend plus room and board
  • Summer staff live on site at Joy Ranch during the summer


Working at Joy Ranch is about

  • Changing lives, yours and the people you serve
  • Kids and grown-ups of all abilities, some in wheelchairs, some with walkers, some with really fast running shoes
  • Living in a community of college-age students
  • Playing outside, on horses, on the lake, on the prairie, under the stars
  • Growing in faith
  • Working really hard


What’s the point of Joy Ranch? The point of Joy Ranch is to welcome all to explore and experience Christ’s love in community and creation. Yeah, but what does that mean?

  • “Welcome all” means Joy Ranch has been built to be fully accessible, so if you are a fourth grader in a wheelchair, an adult with a walker, or a six-year-old who can run really fast, you can all do things together at Joy Ranch.
  • “Explore and experience Christ’s love” means Joy Ranch is a place of faith. We are a Bible camp of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). You don’t have to be Lutheran to work here, though.
  • “In community” means when you work at Joy Ranch, you do so amongst a group of people who will laugh alongside you, work alongside you, pray alongside you. These people will challenge you, affirm you, and become life-long friends.
  • “And creation” means we love to play outside, on horses, on the lake, on the prairie, under the stars.


Working at Joy Ranch isn’t right for everyone. Is it right for you?

  • Do you have a strong work ethic?
  • Do you like people, kids and grown ups?
  • Do you wonder about matters of faith? (Wondering is enough; we’re a little suspicious if you know everything about faith.)
  • Are you willing to get to know people with disabilities?
  • Can you be flexible with YOUR plans to meet the needs of the people you serve?
  • Can you work and live with a diverse group of your peers?
  • Can you live in the moment, whether that moment is funny, tear-filled, humble, loud, or quiet?


If any of these characteristics are a challenge for you, working at Joy Ranch might not be a good fit.

Are you:

  • impatient
  • easily stressed out
  • frequently discouraged
  • argumentative
  • judgmental
  • unreliable
  • domineering
  • insensitive
  • inappropriate


Are you thinking, “I’d love to work at Joy Ranch, but I need an internship.” No problem! We are willing to work with you and your school to help make your summer of service at Joy Ranch a powerful and useful internship.

Just a few internship possibilities: Education or special education • Pre-med, physical or occupational therapy • Recreational therapy • Equine studies • Social work

How’s working at Joy Ranch going to help my resume?

You can tell future employers you have gained hands-on experience in all of these very marketable skills: • Problem solving • Public speaking • Engaging and relating to all kinds of people • Conflict resolution • Teamwork • Creative thinking • Significant responsibility (children’s lives are in your hands, after all) • Risk management • Positive attitude and productive results in the midst of stressful situations • Ability to accomplish much with a limited budget • Initiative and follow through

Who comes to Joy Ranch?

Good question, glad you asked. Joy Ranch is about welcoming ALL.

  • Families, including special programs for families with a parent or child with a special need
  • Kids of many abilities who love horses
  • Adults with developmental and/or physical disabilities
  • Grandparents and their grandchildren
  • Middle and high school-age kids
  • A special camp for children with cancer
  • Family reunions


I know what a horse is, but that’s it. Can I still work at Joy Ranch?

  • Yes! And, by the end of the summer, you’ll know a lot more than that!


I love horses; can I work at Joy Ranch?

  • Yes!


I’m close to hooked, tell me some fascinating trivia.

  • Along with over 20 horses, we have a turkeys, ducks, cats, and a pig named Lord Bacon.
  • Joy Ranch is designed as an old west town, that means we have a Main Street for hoedowns.
  • There is a great little lake for boating, fishing, and swimming.
  • Summer 2017 will only be Joy Ranch’s sixth summer of camp—it’s very new.


Want to give it a try?

  • Apply online OR • Email OR • Text 651.274.8205