HOPE Youth Corps / HOPE worldwide Singles Corps/Volunteer Corps FAQs
What is HOPE Youth Corps / HWW Singles Corps / HWW Volunteer Corps?
HYC / HSC / HVC is a faith-based volunteer program focusing on leadership training and community service throughout the world. It brings people from all different backgrounds together to work with HOPE worldwide programs across the globe, serving the world’s poor.
Who is eligible?
Participants are selected based on their application, recommendations and heart to serve. In order to travel internationally, U.S. and Canada participants must be over the age of 18, unless accompanied by a chaperone. The chaperone must be over 21 and also a participant on the same program. Non-U.S. and non-Canadian applicants have to be 15 and over. For North American programs, the age requirement is 15 and over for all. The programs are open to both disciples and non-disciples. That being said, each participant must hold to the standards and integrity of the program.
How do I apply?
Apply online using the application link in the navigation bar. Please find the program that you want to apply for (HOPE Youth Corps, HOPE Singles Corps, etc.) and click the “Apply Now” direct link. Applications are accepted on a rolling admissions basis.
To begin the application process, you must first register by clicking on the “Application” link on the left side of the page. This will lead you to the registration page, which comprises of several steps. You then need to pay your $300 deposit, and make sure the two people you nominate as your references send your recommendations in. Only then can we process your application, and accept you to the program.
I applied. Now what?
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. We review your application once you have filled in the on-line form, paid your $300 deposit, and we have received your two recommendations. If you are accepted to the program, we will let you know as soon as we are able. Typically, applications are reviewed weekly. You will also receive an acceptance e-mail with information about the program and what you need to do from that point.
Who can write my recommendations?
You will need two recommendations. The link to the recommendation form will be sent automatically to the two people you choose on your application. People submitting recommendations for you should be either church leaders, or church staff. In case of a congregation with no full time staff, a lay leader of good standing, or a HOPE worldwide Chapter leader can do so. Under no circumstances should a family member fill in the recommendation.
Once a recommendation has been submitted correctly, the person writing it will receive a confirmation e-mail. Let the people who are writing your recommendations know this, as acceptance to a program is often delayed unnecessarily by a missing recommendation.
Please note that as of 2017, we require a 3rd recommendation for any applicant who is NOT a student (if you are not enrolled in high school or university) and is planning to serve in a program with children. More details available on the application.
What about payment?
When you fill in your application form you will be directed to the payment page. You need to pay a $300 deposit in order for us to process your application. Once accepted to the program, that deposit is non-refundable. If you are not accepted, the deposit will be returned to you. Bear in mind that as applications come in, applicants who pay their deposit and send in their two recommendations in a timely manner, will get accepted faster, and have a better chance of being on their first choice program.
The rest of your fee needs to be paid by the participant, in one lump sum. Starting in November 2015, we will not accept partial payments or donations on behalf of a participant. As our numbers have grown, we do not have the administrative resources to handle partial payments. We expect each participant to collect their fee and pay it in in one payment when they are ready to do so (before the payment deadline). No participant will be allowed to go on program if their fee is not paid in full.
What does the participation fee cover?
Our typical two-week program has the following breakdown: 1/4 of the fee covers the cost of accommodation, 1/4 covers meals and transportation, 1/4 covers the cost of service and recreational activities, and 1/4 goes to operational costs (processing fees, background checks, risk management, application process, travel insurance coverage, fund transfer charges, site leaders' cost, etc). For a two week program where everything is covered from the time you land until the time you leave, we believe it is an incredible bargain.
Do I need to get travel insurance and/or travel medical insurance in case of lost luggage, medical emergencies, medical evacuation, etc.?
For 2017 sites located outside of the United States, we provide travel insurance and travel medical insurance as a part of the participation fee. Insurance coverage details (including coverage limits) will be provided to the participant. Participants are welcome to purchase additional coverage if desired.
Do you have any recommendations regarding booking flights?
We encourage you to book your flights early as prices often drastically increase as your departure date nears. Many participants find decent fares through farecompare.com and for participants 18-25 years old, you can check out studentuniverse.com for discounted flights. For our non-U.S. sites, we recommend avoiding flights with multiple layovers and specifically flights with layovers in Istanbul, Turkey (due to political unrest) or France (frequent airline strikes). Many participants have also had significant issues with flights booked on discounted Chinese airlines. Often the less expensive option of a flight is not worth the risk of dealing with cancelled flights, poor customer service and missed flight connections. Please consider booking your flights on reputable and major airlines. These are only our recommendations as booking your flights is the responsibility of the participant.
What do I do if I need a Visa for my site?
It is NOT the responsibility of the HOPE worldwide staff to arrange visas for any participant. If you do need help with obtaining a visa, HOPE worldwide suggests using the travel agency Raptim Travel. More specifically, participants can contact Frances Jones (firstname.lastname@example.org or 717-721-7334) for help with travel arrangements as well as visa processing.
If you are to choose to use Raptim, or any other travel agency, please understand that the cost of the travel agent falls on the responsibility of the participant and not on HOPE worldwide.
Are there any risks associated with participating in these programs?
Participation in the HOPE Youth Corps, HWW Volunteer Corps and HWW Singles Corps may involve programs located in impoverished neighborhoods in the United States, or traveling to countries where you may encounter poor living standards, unclean or dangerous environments, and unstable political climates. HOPE worldwide takes reasonable precautions to participants to prevent any of these adverse consequences against its participants, such as warning against the dangers, suggesting that participants consult with medical authorities regarding appropriate vaccinations, and educating its participants on how to handle potential problems. Nevertheless, participants should understand that these matters are largely, and at times, entirely beyond the control or influence of HOPE worldwide and therefore, represent risks that must be seriously considered.
I have some dietary restrictions, can I request special meals on my trip?
Please note that our sites are not equipped to prepare special meals based on specific dietary preferences. The meals on the trip should have enough variety that you can pick from what is provided to meet your needs. If you have a serious medical food allergy or cannot tolerate this arrangement, please consider that this may not be the program for you.
What immunizations do I need?
It is not in HOPE worldwide’s policy to require or recommend any shots or medications for a site, however, HOPE worldwide does strongly encourage each participant to contact their local travel agent or doctor.