Prepare Your group has to be self contained. Prepare as if you were going on a camping trip.
Six Months Before Your Trip Define your purpose. Is your trip informational, medical, or construction oriented? Talk with your church members and leaders about your purpose.
Five Months Before Your Trip Contact HEF. Set the date. Explore costs. Ask for help if you need it.
Four Months Before Your Trip Build your team. Let God lead people to participate. Keep your purpose in mind. Meet and pray together.
Three Months Before Your Trip Get passports. It usually takes about 6 weeks to get one. Get immunizations and medications. Consult your health department. Not all doctors are aware of the specific needs of travel to Haiti.
Two Months Before your Trip Make travel arrangements. Schedule Flights. Try to travel together.
One Month Before your Trip Contact HEF. Finalize your team count. Confirm guesthouse and vehicle reservations.
Two Weeks Before your Trip Assemble supplies. Assign packing responsibilities. Check personal items (not too personal).
One week Before your Trip Double check all packed items Review all documents, tickets, etc.
REMEMBER Pack as if you are camping. Use the attached list as a guide.
Prepare For The Environment Haiti is hot – hot in January, very hot in July. Haiti is dirty – dusty roads which are muddy after rains. Haiti is crowded – help each other in crowded places. Haiti is friendly – anticipate meeting people you will never forget.
GO Make your trip a time when people can experience new culture and connect with the wider body of Christ.
Travel Pack as lightly as you can – one checked bag and one carry on. You must be able to move with your own luggage. Don’t let the porters at the PAP airport even touch your luggage unless you want to pay ten of them or argue in Creole. Make sure you have vital phone numbers and contact information.
The Guesthouse Meet together each day for devotions. Pray together daily. Sing together. Enjoy meals together – try new foods.
Accommodations The Mission will provide three meals each day. The Mission will provide bottled drinking water. The Mission will provide a beds with sheets and pillows. The Mission will provide towels. Showers and toilets are available. Limited solar electric power is available.
Interact Learn a small amount of the language. Leave the guesthouse to venture into the Community. Visit with Haitians. Invite them to the guesthouse.
Visit the Mission See schools in session. Attend church if possible.
Explore Opportunities Talk with the priests about the needs of the Mission. Think about ways your church can become more deeply involved. Think about others in your church who possess a special skill that would be useful.
Prepare for Disappointment Travel is difficult – vehicles break often – roads become impossible. Pray for patience. It takes a long time to go a short distance. Plan your days but be flexible.
Get To Know People Take pictures. Write names and information that go with the pictures. Arrange for future communication if possible.
Consult With The Priests The priests know the most urgent needs. Come prepared for God to use you. Find a place for each member of your team to serve. If you have a service project in mind make sure it is an achievable goal.
Shipping To Haiti If you plan a major project that requires prearranged shipping, consult with HEF. The Haitian government doesn’t always work well. Things can be chaotic and unfair. Proceed with extreme caution.
Meet As A Group Solidify your story. Share your story with the members of your church.
Plan Future Trips Find ways that your church can be engaged in the Mission. Share your thoughts with the leaders of your church.
Talk For HEF Consider sharing your experience with nearby churches. HEF needs workers to present the needs of our mission to others. Someone who has taken the time to visit Haiti has valuable credibility that makes them worth the attention of others.
Chronicle Your Trip Make a book. Design a Power Point. Give your church something to remember. Twenty or thirty years from now people can look back and rate your trip as one of the best things they have done as a church.
Contact The Media Your local newspaper, radio station, or television station loves to feature a story like this.
Share With HEF We want to share your trip with all of our supporters. Having a record of successful trips adds tremendously to our message.
Regular Trips Think about making a trip to Haiti a regular event for your church. Groom others to lead in this endeavor. You want this to be the work of your church, not just a few individuals. Span generations.
HEF Sponsored Trips If adequate interest is shown HEF will begin regular trips to Haiti to introduce others to mission work at our schools. Look for information in our newsletter, on our website, on our Facebook page. We’d love to have you join us!