What kind of work can we help with in Honduras?
Most teams that come to work alongside United Methodist Mission Church of Honduras (UMMCH) are helping with the construction of church sanctuaries, Sunday school rooms, education buildings, and a few parsonages. At the churchís current stage of development this is the help most needed from UMVIM teams. The actual construction work that groups help with is very basic, and the work is accessible to people of all skill levels.
Some members of UMVIM teams come prepared with activities for kids in the community, in addition to the task of construction.
We also welcome teams of medical professionals to address health issues in the communities of the Methodist congregations.
U Remember, no matter what the task of your volunteer mission team (i.e. building something), the priority and the mission of your team is to represent the love of Christ, to attend to the relationships with Honduran brothers and sisters, and to offer a listening ear and a caring spirit. These are just as important as laying bricks or painting a wall.
Who will be our hosts in Honduras ?
Short-term mission teams
are hosted by local Honduran Methodist pastors and congregations. There is
an UMVIM coordinator who helps make preparations for your visit, often
accompanies arriving UMVIM teams for a day or two, and gives each team an
orientation to Honduras.
∑ United Methodist Volunteers in Mission charges mission teams $45 per person per day (effective 1-1-10). This covers food, lodging and transportation.
∑ Construction teams are asked to provide $3000 (effective 1-1-10) toward the purchase of construction materials. Any money which is not used during the week will be used to hire local workers and purchase supplies in order to continue the work after the team has left.
∑ Fees for a local translator are $50 per day.
∑ Airport exit tax is approximately $35 per person. This is paid at the airport after check-in and may be paid in either dollars or lempira. Credit cards are not accepted.
∑ For more cost information, see Money Matters for UMVIM Teams.
When do we pay?
We ask teams to send complete payment (both construction materials and per diem fee) so that we have it in hand in Honduras 30 days before the team's arrival date. This makes it possible to purchase materials and supplies before the team arrives. Your method of sending money will determine when we have it in hand.
What are the first steps we need to take if we want to come as a team to work with the Honduras Methodist Mission Church?
Please send your team's tentative dates to the UMVIM coordinator for the United Methodist Mission Church of Honduras. Contact Ron Davidson at email@example.com for construction teams and Cynthia Ceballos at firstname.lastname@example.org for medical teams. Teams are assigned according to the priorities of the Mission Church.
More information on Site Assignment and Scheduling.
More information on Deciding the Length of Your Trip.
These two things take many months to complete, so each team member should start these processes right away.
∑ You need a valid U.S. passport to enter Honduras . You will be issued a 30-day tourist visa upon entry at the Honduras airport at no charge.
Passports must be valid for at least 6 months after the date of your departure from the US.
∑ Immunizations are not required, but are highly recommended. Check with an international travel clinic in your area, or your health care provider. Most people receive the following immunizations: tetanus, hepatitis A & B, typhoid, and malaria prevention medication.
How can we, as a team and as individuals, train and prepare ahead of time to travel to Honduras ?
Experience has shown that the more well-trained and well-oriented a team is ahead of time, the more positive and profound a volunteerís experience will be. Team leaders should not only share information on logistics and packing; but also encourage the team to meet, to reflect, to think ahead of time about your teamís purpose and attitude. It is important to discuss issues of culture, the reasons behind the UMVIM policies in Honduras, and the benefits of being FLEXIBLE in a new, sometimes challenging, setting.
ō We expect that each member of your mission team will participate in orientation gatherings before leaving the US . Education is an important element of mission teams to Honduras ; before, during, and after your trip.
ō This website has lots more information on Preparing Your Mission Team. Team leaders are expected to review and share with team members all of the information on this page.
Weíre thinking of including youth on our volunteer mission teamÖ
Teenagers on a team can be an asset and are welcome. It works especially well when a parent is on the team also, though this isnít necessary. No age limits have been set, but since it is the team leader who will have to be responsible for the youth members, the team leader should make those decisions based on knowledge of each individual.
Those youth who donít go with their parents need signed and notarized letters from BOTH parents. Youth that go with one parent need a letter from the other parent. Any person under 18 years of age at the time they travel to Honduras must have some special documentation. Please request more information from the UMVIM coordinators.
We have a person on our team who is not a U.S. citizen. Is this a problem?
Visa requirements to enter Honduras vary depending on the team memberís country of origin. Even though the team member may be a legal resident of the United States , there is still legal documentation that must be obtained. Requirements for returning to the U.S. for non-U.S. citizens are even more adhered to after September 11th. If you have a non-U.S. citizen on your team, he or she should check with the nearest U.S. consulate for immigration laws before coming to Honduras.
We have a lot more questions! Who can we contact?
Contact the UMVIM coordinators for additional information. Contact Ron Davidson at email@example.com for construction teams and Cynthia Ceballos at firstname.lastname@example.org for medical teams. If you are interested in sending a team, we have further information to send you. We are at your service to answer questions, field ideas, and be liaisons with the pastors here in Honduras . We will be happy to walk with you and your team, as you explore what it is to have been called to Christís mission and to work in the world in this particular way!
Updated November, 2009