Frequently asked questions about Samaritan’s Purse project trips
How much do I need to fundraise for the trip?
Samaritan’s Purse Canada invites trip participants to join us in carrying out our charitable activities through short-term mission trips. Samaritan’s Purse may only be able to undertake the mission trip if sufficient funds are raised. The amount per person is indicated on the trip description page, and trip participants are asked to donate or fundraise this full amount to Samaritan’s Purse in order to cover the costs.
What does the money go toward?
The donation amount includes return international airfare (from the departure city as indicated in the trip description), accommodations, food, medical insurance, transportation, project costs and administration.
Is it tax-deductible?
Yes. Tax receipts will be issued for all gifts to the fullest extent allowed by the law.
How do I make sure that I’m supporting a long-term, sustainable project?
Samaritan’s Purse Canada invites Canadians to serve with ministry projects that we support long-term. Many volunteers are ongoing donors, and we invite them to participate in the projects they’re supporting so that they can learn more, connect with our ministry partners in person, and return to Canada as advocates and strategic prayer supporters of the ministry they’ve invested in. The projects our volunteers serve with are led and implemented by local partners or staff, who are familiar with the needs, culture, and effective strategies of their own communities and contexts. We work closely with our valued ministry partners as they host Canadian teams and determine the most suitable role that a short-term team can play in their ongoing ministry. After a Canadian team leaves, the project they’ve supported continues to be carried out by our local ministry partners.
How do I fundraise for my trip?
You will be invited to set up your own personalized online sponsorship page
. You and others will be able to make donations towards your fundraising goal through this secure website. Donations can also be made by cheque, or by telephone using a credit card. We encourage you to involve other people in your fundraising efforts for this mission trip, as it allows more people to be involved with what God is doing in a different country, and can also help you to gather prayer support.
Is it safe?
Some risk is inherent in international engagement. However, when partnering with us, you are joining an organization that works closely with local partners, who have important local knowledge and relationships, and takes steps to mitigate risks. Every Samaritan’s Purse team leader has gone through international travel security training, and participants on mission trips are supported and monitored by our global security operations center. We believe our lives and safety are in God’s strong hands; still we undertake much due diligence in preparing for and carrying out each mission trip.
Who will be organizing and leading the project trip?
A Team Coordinator from our mobilization team will work with you on all aspects of trip planning. We’ll take care of all the flight bookings, accommodations, in-country schedule, and ground transportation. All travel and accommodations will be booked with safety, comfort, reliability, and cost-effectiveness taken into consideration. On the field, we provide a trained and experienced team leader for the trip. Your team leader will be familiar with SPC’s ministry projects and will provide very capable logistical and spiritual leadership.
Can I book my own flights?
No. As per our charitable policies, Samaritan’s Purse must coordinate travel for volunteers involved with our work. It is also our policy for team members to travel together, arriving in country as a team. If you need to book flights within Canada to arrive in the designated departure city, we can help to book these flights for you.
I’m already going to be travelling on my own somewhere in the world. Can I volunteer with Samaritan’s Purse?
You’re welcome to email us to discuss your particular scenario, but it’s not likely. Our work is carried out around the world by international and national staff, and volunteers. We send short-term mission teams to support project work, but as you can imagine, it does require a lot of time and effort for our partners to host these teams well. Therefore, we are generally not able to accommodate other requests to volunteer internationally.
Is there a minimum or maximum age limit?
For most of our teams, the minimum age to participate is 16, and team members who are 16 or 17 will need parental permission. On our special “family teams” (which usually happen over the Christmas holidays each year), the minimum age is 10. There is no maximum age limit, and we welcome anyone who is young at heart!
Can I bring my kids?
Children age 10 and older are welcome on our Family Teams, when travelling with at least one parent or guardian. Many of our other teams would also welcome children (age 10 or older) travelling with a parent or guardian. Some teams will accept minors travelling alone who are 16 or older, as long as they have parental consent. Please refer to specific details of each trip to confirm. All team members are asked to contribute or fundraise the same donation amount, regardless of age.
Do I have to be a Christian to go?
No, however we do ask that you participate in all activities with the team, including prayer and devotions, and that you respect the beliefs of everyone on the team and our local Christian ministry partners.
Do I have to speak the language?
No. When a team serves in a country where English isn’t widely spoken, we find local interpreters to join the team during their time in country.
What type of training do you offer?
We offer a one-day training event in a couple of major Canadian cities each year. In addition to the in-person training day, we also connect each team through conference call before their trip.
Where in the world do you send volunteer teams?
We always connect Canadian volunteer teams with ministries that Samaritan’s Purse Canada is in relationship with. This includes countries in Central and South America, Africa, and Asia.
Can our church/school/community group send a team with you?
Yes! You can put your own team together, and we will connect you with a ministry project that fits your group’s interests and abilities. We will provide a Samaritan’s Purse team leader, a team coordinator to arrange flights, schedule, and logistics, and an online fundraising platform for your team. An overall team budget will be set by Samaritan’s Purse Canada with a per person donation amount presented to the team. This will be an inclusive amount that covers travel, accommodation, meals, translators, security, medical insurance, administration, and project/ministry costs. All travel and accommodations will be booked with safety, comfort, reliability, and cost-effectiveness taken into consideration. Connect with us directly to begin the conversation about sending your group to serve with us.