ProWorld places the highest priority on ensuring a safe and stable environment for all volunteers. If one imagines concentric circles of support and safety, the first that surrounds our volunteers is the host community. ProWorld’s long relationships and good standing within our host communities offer a high degree of community support to volunteers. Within that circle, volunteers are bolstered by the next circle of safety: ProWorld orientation tools and standard operating procedures in place to protect volunteers.
Safety and Health
Thorough health and safety preparations precede each program, beginning with extensive pre-departure materials, a carefully designed on-site orientation, and followed by regular staff and volunteer check ins.
At the center of these circles of safety lies the core to volunteer safety: the volunteer. By using the tools, systems, and advice of the ProWorld teams and by connecting positively and respectfully to their host community, the volunteers themselves take the most important steps to ensure a safe and successful program.
Nevertheless, risks are inherent to the very nature of travel and cross-cultural learning. Volunteers must understand the nature of our programs and accept all risks involved. ProWorld takes great precaution to minimize and eliminate risk during each program.
Throughout each program, ProWorld relies on many resources to assess and respond to the specific health and safety needs of each volunteer including:
On-site Program Directors, in-country staff, and cooperating institutions
Local health care professionals and facilities
Health background and needs of individual volunteers
US, UK, Peruvian, Belizean, and Mexican government advisories
Centers for Disease Control
All ProWorld volunteers receive health and travel insurance, providing additional protection and security.
All Program Directors carry cell phones and communicate regularly with onsite volunteers, staff members, and the ProWorld headquarters. Email and phone communication are available for staff at all country headquarters. An emergency contact person is available 24 hours a day at every site for volunteers and families.
We also recommend that all participants take time to learn more about travel, disease control and advisories in the country they'll be working in by visiting the sites below.
United States Department of State
Visit the State Department website for the latest travel warnings, consular information sheets, and public announcements. Here you can also find valuable travel tips for students and women traveling alone. You can find contact information for the U.S. embassy or consulate in the country you will be visiting. If you need information for obtaining or renewing your passport, you can get that here as well.
Centers for Disease Control
Visit the Travel Health section of the Centers for Disease Control website for the latest health-related travel warnings, recommendations for immunizations, and important information about safe food and water in the country you will be visiting.
World Health Organization
The World Health Organization website offers a wealth of health-related information for the international traveler. The International Travel and Health section of the site offers insightful suggestions on the precautions one can take before, during, and after international travel. The site is well-organized and allows you to search for specific information on the country or countries you will be visiting.