Thinking about going on a short term global trip always brings about great questions!  Here are some of the most common ones we receive when people or their family members are considering applying for one of the Hear The Cry trips.  If you don’t find the answer to your question here, please ask!  Contact penny@hearthecry.org for more help.

Q: What does the trip cost pay for?

A: The cost of the trip covers all flights, accommodations, meals, ground transportation, insurance, supplies and excursions.

Q: What if I don’t have a passport?
A: All of our destinations require a valid passport.  Generally allow 4-6 weeks for a new passport to arrive.  Expedited services are available when needed.  Information on applying can be found here.

Q: My passport will expire while I am on the trip.  Is that okay?
A: Unfortunately, no.  You will need to renew your passport before you depart.  Valid passports must have an expiration date that is a minimum of six months past the date of your trip departure.  You will not be permitted to board your flights if it will expire before this.

Q: What shots will I need?
A: Depending on the country you are traveling to, the shots will vary.  Most of the places we visit have recommendations for Tetanus, Hep A, Typhoid,  and TDP.  Uganda requires proof of Yellow Fever immunization, and several locations suggest a prescription for an anti-Malarial.  As each team gets established, we will advise you of the specific needs for the region you will be traveling to.

Q: Does the price of the trip cover the shots needed?
A: No.  The cost of the shots are separate. We do work with a local travel nurse who comes to one of the team meetings to provide a convenient way to get your immunizations.  The fees for these shots are close to cost, with a $40 consultation fee.  You are welcome to use another travel clinic or your own personal physician, but check ahead on specifics as many offices do not stock these vaccines due to low demand and short shelf life.

Q: I’m concerned about the Zika virus.  What can you tell me and how can I protect myself?
A: It’s good to aware and smart in your planning.  Hear The Cry works with an incredibly knowledgeable travel nurse who stays on top of concerns such as the Zika virus.  Here a bit of info on the virus and the best way to avoid it:

Zika is a virus carried by the Aedes Aegypti mosquito…this is a day flying mosquito that is found just about everywhere in the world below 6500 feet where the climate is warm enough for mosquitoes to breed.
This is the same mosquito that carries the Dengue Virus, Chikungunya Virus and Yellow Fever Virus.

If a woman is pregnant apparently the virus will interfere in the neuro development of the fetus causing an incomplete brain development (micro brain) and thus a microencephaly or small head.  If women are not pregnant and get infected with the virus it apparently gives us flu-like symptoms with a low grade fever, aches, and a rash…all of which subside in a few days.  There is no indication that the virus lies dormant in the body to be manifest at a later date.

Protection against mosquito bites is our only protection as there is no vaccine developed against Zika.

Remember the clothing repellent with Permethrin (from the Chrysanthemum plant) kills mosquitoes on contact!  I think we should be spraying every thing!  The clothing repellent is inactivated if sprayed on the human skin, but will stay bound to fabric for six weeks through six washings.

Skin repellent merely repels mosquitoes and very effective repellents are Ultrathon with 34% Deet and Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus with about 30% of the oil of eucalyptus.  One can find the clothing repellent and skin repellents at REI or Amazon online.

That is really all we can do to protect ourselves from mosquitoes at this time!

Q: Will there be meetings before the trip departs?
A: Yes!  We want you to be informed and as equipped as possible before you go, and get to know your teammates.  There are generally 3-4 meetings scheduled between the time the team is established and the date of departure.

Q: Who is leading the trip?
A: Hear The Cry has several seasoned leaders.  Some are pastors from the church, others are people just like you who have invested in relationships with the organizations we partner with and have been to the location several times.  All of our leaders are people we know and have complete trust in to care well for the team, both before and after the trip.

Q: What are the accommodations like?
A: The accommodations are varied depending on the location.  Some locations you will stay directly with the hosts or families we are working with, some locations have housing just for the team, and in some spots we stay at a nearby hotel.  All locations have running water, but due to the nature of the property it may or may not always be heated for showering.

Q: What do I need to pack?
A; We have a list of what you should bring that will be included with the team information.  This list can also be found on our website under “packing list”.

Q: I have dietary restrictions, will I be able to eat anything?
A: In almost every location there are choices that can you can work with for your meals.  We do recommend if you have multiple restrictions, or are just concerned you won’t have enough options to keep you full, to pack some of your favorite snacks and bars to keep you going.  We will bring some snacks along too!

Q:  Can I drink the water?
A: Yes.  In any of the locations where we avoid tap water we will provide bottled water for the team.  We also encourage everyone to bring an empty water bottle too that can be kept filled.

Q: What will we be doing?
A:   Serving Jesus!  This can look differently everyday.  In some areas we will share the gospel, feed hundreds of children, hold babies, build homes, plant gardens, mop floors, play with kids, teach kids about Jesus through VBS, paint, listen to stories of broken and renewed lives, play games, teach skills, and make lifelong friends.  It could be any or all of these.  In other areas we might be doing the same thing!

Q: Do I need to bring any money?
A: You won’t need any cash unless you hope to purchase a few souvenirs or need an extra snack or two while you are traveling.  Since all of the daily needs are covered in the overall cost of the trip, any extras are optional.

Q: What if I don’t speak the language?
A: No worries!  We likely don’t either!!  Most places speak english.  When we are serving with those who don’t, we will have one or more translators with us.  Learning the local language can be challenging, but give it a try.  Asking to learn and trying brings joy to the people we are with, and sometime a little laughter.

Q: Will there be internet there?
A: Potentially, but not always.  Some locations have spotty internet at best, others have great technology.  Our focus on the trip is to be engaged with the people we have come to serve, and with our team.  Since this is a short-term mission, we are hopeful everyone will be able to journal all the excitement they want to share when they get home!  If you are concerned about an emergency, our Hear The Cry team can reach you or your family.

Q: What happens if I can’t raise all the money by the deadline?
A: Our travelers are set up with a great fundraising platform.  While some are able to pay out of pocket for the entire trip, we understand that the bigger percentage raise support.  We will ask for a $25 deposit when you are accepted to a team.  From there we get you set up to start raising support. Two months prior to the trip, you need to have 50% of the total cost in your account before airline tickets are purchased, and you will have until two weeks prior to departure to have your full amount covered.  If two weeks prior to departure there is still a gap between the donations that have come in, and the full price of the trip, your credit card will be charged for the balance.  Of course each traveler is advised of this as they commit to the team.

Q: How old do I have to be to go on a trip?
A: Due to the nature of the trips and the sleeping arrangements, guys with guys and gals with gals, we are thrilled to have all ages of adults – 78 is the oldest so far, high school students who have the blessing of their parent or guardian, and middle school students who are accompanied on the same trip by a parent or guardian of the same gender.  There have been occasions where families with younger children have traveled and we are more than happy to talk with you about this.