Safety & Risk Management
GIVE is focused on providing our volunteers with an experience of a lifetime that is safe, educational, and impactful. Of course, risk is inherent in all international travel, but we maintain a culture of comprehensive risk mitigation on all of our trips. We work to identify risks in our operations and minimize those risks through carefully selected partnerships, proactive planning and continuous assessment of effective communication, training, equipment, and emergency response. We have a comprehensive risk management plan and, acknowledging that change is a constant, we continually implement changes to our programs and adapt as circumstances evolve.
As we begin to reopen our international programs, we have enhanced our health and safety protocols to mitigate the unique risks associated with COVID-19.
Your GIVE Guides
All of our guides started as GIVE volunteers, gained necessary certifications during our Wilderness & International Leadership Development Course (WILD), increased their experience and skill-sets as in-country interns, and are now facilitating safe, educational and inspiring experiences for our volunteers. All staff are certified in Wilderness First-Aid and CPR, and trained in Risk Management, Outdoor Leadership & Teamwork, Wilderness Skills & Decision-making, and Cultural Awareness. We also employ local guides in each of our destinations, who act as a critical link between our volunteers and the communities we empower. Click here to meet the GIVE team!
Smart Travel With GIVE Volunteers
GIVE educates our volunteers to be informed travelers and volunteers prior to departure and again in-country. Smart traveling techniques, such as traveling in groups and the buddy system, are utilized and emphasized throughout the excursion so volunteers are equipped with the tools to make knowledgeable, responsible decisions. We also convey codes of conduct to our volunteers prior to the start of the trip that outline our expectations and help to ensure that GIVE volunteers are responsible, respectful guests in our host communities. Additionally, we promote responsible behavior and put volunteers in low-risk situations with the tools needed to enable their well-being, as well as maintain strong emergency action plans in case something does go wrong. We are responsible as travelers to be ambassadors for both GIVE and our home countries.
Safety of Adventure Activities
Our adventure activities are supervised by trained personnel specialized in those specific activities. These include safari, surfing, snorkeling, volcanic sand-boarding, among others. As the nature of these activities indicate, there is inherent risk and we strive to mitigate these risks by:
- Providing volunteers with the tools necessary to make informed decisions about participating in activities prior to participation.
- Partnering with personnel who are trained in the activities we participate in as well as briefing volunteers before commencing volunteer or adventure activities.
- Implementing comprehensive risk management plans should any issues arise.
More On Safety
GIVE Team Leaders are prepared for emergencies at all international volunteer project sites and adventure locations. We take great care in establishing emergency action plans, including communication strategies, knowing the best routes to community resources (fire houses, hospitals, etc.), identifying consolidation points, preparing evacuation plans, and establishing partnerships with locals to assist in the event of emergencies. GIVE also has 24/7 emergency and evacuation assist, the GIVE Headquarters has a 24/7 internal line for guides, and the GIVE Headquarters and flight agents are available on a 24/7 external line whenever volunteers are traveling. In addition, GIVE has consulted with and established working relationships with local authorities and/or governmental officials of our presence in order to ensure the best safety measures are applied to all projects and adventure tour planning.
GIVE requires all our volunteers to purchase International Medical and Travelers Insurance that provides coverage for unforeseen circumstances that may arise. Such insurance provides coverage for medical or travel related issues, such as theft and flight delay.
GIVE recommends that all volunteers consult their doctor to discuss vaccination requirements and recommendations. Inform your doctor where you are traveling, what activities you plan to do, and how long you’re going to be traveling. Please do not wait until the last minute as most immunizations take at least one month to take effect, and some vaccinations can take up to two months. Please visit The Center for Disease Control and Prevention for more information regarding immunizations and vaccinations.