We understand that, regardless of experience, traveling to a developing country can bring up concerns about health, safety, and security. That's why we want to assure you that when it comes to our volunteers, keeping you healthy and safe during your service time with us is our priority. Since 1994, thanks to our tried and true practices and reliable leadership team, over 22,000 volunteers have enjoyed safe and life-changing volunteer trips with Outreach360 in the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua.
Here are just a few of the ways we keep our volunteers and staff safe, healthy, and happy!
We have a full-time staff of local and international leaders guiding your volunteer experience. They live and work at Outreach360 facilities and in the communities we work. They know the country, the community, and the neighborhood where you will be volunteering.
We focus our development efforts in rural areas far removed from large cities and tourist areas where crime is more common. We intentionally work in small towns where we can meet the needs of underdeveloped and underserved communities while benefiting from the security of rural areas.
We prioritize developing strong relationships and healthy partnerships in the communities that we serve. Not only does it inform our programs and keep us sustainable, but it has also allowed us to become respected community members.
Outreach360 intentionally houses volunteers in our own facilities where we are able to maintain safe and secure accommodations during your volunteer team. When necessary to accommodate busier volunteer weeks, Outreach360 will occasionally house volunteers in well-respected local hotels.
Our staff are trained in emergency response and are always in communication with our in-country leadership team and U.S. offices. Although very uncommon, if a volunteer requires medical attention, there are trusted, private medical clinics near our facilities; Outreach360 leaders are trained to facilitate the clinic process, including translation and transportation.
When volunteers arrive on-site, they receive a full day of orientation. Our leaders keep our volunteers aware of ways to stay healthy and safe. They educate volunteers on things like local customs, drinking sufficient amounts of water, when to apply bug repellent, how to avoid accidents in the area, etc.
One reason why we make a point of housing our volunteers at Outreach360 facilities is the ability to provide meals prepared by experienced staff. Our cooks have been trained to cook meals at a hygiene standard we know will keep our volunteers and leadership team healthy and safe.
Bottled, purified water is available to our volunteers 24/7 to ensure they have access to clean drinking water and are staying hydrated. Additionally, all meals are prepared using purified water.
We encourage our volunteers to use mosquito repellent, especially in the morning and evening. Additionally, mosquito nets or screened rooms are provided for all volunteers. With over 22,000 volunteers joining us since 1994, we are not aware of a confirmed case of a volunteer contracting a mosquito-borne illness.
Outreach360 provides personal medical/travel insurance for each volunteer, along with industry-leading foreign liability insurance. Enrollment is automatic; we will use the information you provide on your registration form to purchase your insurance. Outreach360 purchases your insurance from IMG (www.imglobal.com). In summary, the plan provides up to $1,000,000 in medical benefits. The deductible is $100 and is the responsibility of each volunteer. In addition to medical benefits, the coverage also includes Emergency Evacuation, Emergency Reunion, Return of Mortal Remains, Political Evacuation, Common Carrier Accidental Death, Accidental Death and Dismemberment, Identity Theft Assistance, Trip Interruption, and Lost Luggage. A key feature of this insurance is a six month benefit period. If something happens to you during your service trip and you receive treatment while in-country, you are eligible for up to six months of follow-up treatment when you return home.