Training is mandatory for all first-time volunteers traveling with the Haiti Partnership. Even if you have traveled extensively in Haiti or other countries, there is important info you will learn about our trips.
Training is free and is typically held for about 3 hours on a Saturday with lunch provided. Other arrangements can be made for training at the discretion of the team leader(s).
General training sessions will be listed here. If none are listed, please contact your team leader or go to “Contact Us” for the next training dates and times.
What will you learn at Haiti Partnership VIM Training?
Here are some examples:
Water – Can I drink the water? What about showers? Brushing your teeth with clean water.
Food – Is it safe? What if I have a special diet? Who cooks the food? Will there be enough?
Appropriate dress in Haiti is important to understand. Culottes to the knee are acceptable for casual shopping or sightseeing. Slacks or jeans are preferred on the work site for your safety.
Dress for church simply. Hose and heels, coats and ties are not necessary. However, if a pastor is on the team and is going to participate in a service, a coat and tie, or cleric is required. No jeans for church. All pastors who wish to participate in a service need to let us know in advance.
It is appropriate to bring things to Haiti for the people, but we have been instructed to bring only items requested by the Methodist Church of Haiti or one of our mission partners. For your safety and for the order of the community, the Church asks that they not be distributed by team members, but by the leaders of the Church. Please be sure your team leaders know of any items you plan to bring.
Do not promise things to Haitian people. This includes any workers or staff employed by our teams or by the Methodist Guest Houses. This fosters a hope for which you might not be able to deliver on. It also causes problems for team leaders, for the next teams into that site, and throws off the balance in the community. Any gifts must be given by permission and through the team leader.
Please do not make special gifts to the interpreters, drivers, cooks, or any other staff. This sets up competition between staff people and puts pressure on other teams and on the Methodist Church of Haiti. All tips will be handled by your team leader(s).
Pictures are great, but not if they offend people and their way of life. Do not take pictures if you would not want your picture taken in the same situation. It is always best to ask. Use your discretion and always check with the team leader before taking photographs in crowded areas.
No smoking on the work site or in public places, please. It does not reflect well on our witness as Christians in a foreign country. There will be opportunities to smoke, but consult your team leader for the appropriate time and place.
It is your responsibility to take with you the entire amount of medication necessary to last your entire stay in Haiti. Please bring an additional two days' supply of all medication you are presently taking. In the event of a delay or an emergency this will prove helpful.
During the packing phase of your trip, remember that you are in a special place doing something special and in Christ's name. When you pack, remember to include Faith, Love, Compassion, Flexibility, Understanding and lots of Patience. Come with an open mind and listen, learn, love, and be loved.