Just the Facts

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What is 12plus1, Inc.? 

12plus1, Inc. is a new non-profit organization 501(c)3 whose programming focuses on service learning.  It is our belief that through service, volunteers will gain:

  • new perspective

  • sense of purpose for their lives

  • promote unity

  • discover the presence of God in life. 

What is the mission and purpose?

The mission of 12plus1 is:  Inspired by the Gospel and called to social justice, 12plus1 develops servant leaders who embrace a shared humanity and live as apostles through service, community, faith and love.

Our foundational principles are:

·       service,

·       community,

·       faith and

·       love.

The goals of 12plus1 are:

·       Develop servant leaders while making a positive contribution

·       Build unity between people

·       Grow in understanding of self through a mutual sharing of gifts

·       Explore the presence of God in your life

·       Gain clarity and discern future educational and career opportunities.

What is Discovery House?                   

Discovery House is a service and faith-based, gap experience for participants ages 18-24 located in Milwaukee, WI.  These young adults make a commitment to volunteering in a service-based organization, living in an intentional Christian community and participating in weekly formation. Weekly formation sessions will provide an opportunity for participants to process their experience, learn about the issues they are witnessing and grow in faith. Participants can select a commitment of one, two, five or ten months.

Where is Discovery House located? 

Milwaukee, WI

What is the time commitment to Discovery House?

Participants can select which commitment works best for them.  The options are:

·       4- week summer session (June 19, 2019- July 20, 2019)

·       8-week summer session (May 29- July 20, 2019)

·       Full Year (10-month commitment; July 31, 2019- May 2020)

·       Semester (5-month commitment; Aug to Dec or Jan to May)


Who should participate in Discovery House? 

Anyone between the ages of 18-24. It is likely participants will be people who want to serve others or take a break from school or need time to plan their future.  Some will come directly from high school others will come after spending some time in college.


What are the characteristics of a Discovery House participant? 

  • Between the ages of 18-24,

  • Strong desire to serve others and have had some service experience, 

  • Willingness to being immersed in the lives of people who may be different than you,

  • Openness to learning about yourself, those you serve and those in community with you,

  • Ability to live simply and in community,

  • Demonstrate reliability, responsibility and a strong work-ethic through previous commitments,

  • Positive attitude,

  • Persistence to navigate challenges,

  • Desire to fully participate in formation opportunities  


What type of service work are the volunteers asked to do? 

Volunteers commit to 4 days of service each week.  Our focus is helping in the following areas: Homeless Shelters, Meal Programs, Health-Care Agencies, Alcohol and Drug Abuse Agencies, Domestic Abuse Shelters, Violence Prevention Programs, Ending Prostitution and Human Trafficking, Food Pantry, Home Rehabilitation and Prison Ministry.  Your service work could be in program, administration, communication/marketing and fundraising. 


What are the service sites?

Current sites are:

Why is community a part of Discovery House?    

Being in community is an essential part of the Discovery House experience.  Through community volunteers will learn basic life skills like budgeting, meal planning, shopping, conflict resolution, communication and emotional intelligence.  The house will be co-ed and include 3-8 residents.  A house coordinator will be in residence.


What are the accommodations?      

Participants will have simple accommodations.  The priority will be on community needs.  Sharing bedrooms and bathroom should be an expectation. Use of cell phones, WIFI, computers, and television may be limited or not available.   Each person will have responsibilities to ensure that your community will thrive.  Examples are:  budget, shopping, cleaning, mowing the lawn and snow-shoveling.  A house coordinator will also live with the community of no more than eight co-ed participants.   


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What is Formation? 

One day each week is set aside to process the experience.  Formation days will include community/social time, prayer, reflection, discussion, justice education about a current issue and exploring a faith issue.  Our goal is for participants to be able to learn from their service and community experiences, grow in understanding current social issues, deepen their relationship with God and have a better understanding of themselves.  Each volunteer will have a mentor whose purpose is to help them make a career/college plan after Discovery House.


Will each participant be ‘super religious’? 

Nope!  Participants will be of varying degrees of faith backgrounds and experiences.  What is necessary is an openness to learning about faith and a willingness to explore God. 


What is the faith tradition of 12plus1? 

Most of those creating 12plus1 and Discovery House, are Roman Catholic.  However, we are open and will be respectful and inclusive of all denominations and faith traditions.  Diversity of faith traditions in the community is viewed as a blessing.  What is most important is that a participant knows that faith, prayer, formation sessions will include God and a search for God.


What does it cost?

Each Discovery House program has its own expenses.  Participants are responsible for fundraising a portion of the cost for each program.  12plus1 and the participant will work together in all fundraising efforts.  Funds will defer expenses associated with room, board, food, insurance, transportation, etc. 

·       4- week summer session                                        $500

·       8-week summer session                                         $1000

·       Semester (five-months)                                          $2000

·       Full Year (ten-months)                                             $4000


Why is it necessary to pay to do service?

The funds you raise will cover some of the cost for the basic necessities and the program.  This is an investment in your future.  Since our fees are much less than a University it is a cheaper alternative to spending a large amount in college tuition to discern that a student is at a school or program that is not right for them.  An important goal for Discovery House is to assist participants discern their future.   12plus1 would work with those who need financial assistance and help all participants in their fundraising.    

Will taking a gap year damage my ability to go to college? 

No!  In fact, many Universities encourage students to take a gap year.  Once accepted to a University a student can ask for a deferment and have the school hold their place after the gap year.  Statistics show that 90% of gap year participants go onto college and actually do better in college than projections indicate.

What will Discovery House provide?

Participants will receive:

  • Room and Board

  • Food

  • Transportation to their service site

  • Formation Program

  • Mentor

What are the guidelines?

All rules and expectations of participants are to be followed.  Failure to do so could result in dismissal from the program. 


What is the selection/application process?

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Participants apply for the program of their choice and the service site that fits their talents and interest.  A selection process involves completing an application, submitting a resume, a video essay of two minutes or less,  a discernment weekend (residential participants) letters of support and interviews.  Applications are being accepted.  There is a rolling admission until all spaces are filled.


What is the timeline?

Applications are currently being accepted for 2019 programs.