Accountability

We invest in continuous improvement in our volunteer management, ensuring team productivity and new volunteer learning opportunities. Above all, we’re committed to integrity in all our operations, striving for program excellence and transparency in our U.S. offices and abroad. Global Volunteers receives no operating funds from religious or government agencies, and is an accredited charity listed on GuideStar and Charity Navigator. These documents detail Global Volunteers’ financial and organizational accountability:

Service Program Agreement

Global Volunteers is a nonprofit corporation incorporated under the laws of the State of Minnesota, USA. In this Volunteer Registration and Agreement (hereinafter Registration), “Global Volunteers” means the corporation, its trustees, directors, officers, employees, team leaders, and agents. “You” and “Your” refers to the person signing this Registration. The “Host” refers to the entity(ies) (e.g., school, clinic, hospital, organization, and/or government agency) which invited Global Volunteers and/or to which you are assigned to serve, and its employees, agents, officers, and directors. Global Volunteers will make all the necessary arrangements to provide You with the opportunity to work with and learn from and about local people in the community for which You register, subject to availability. You agree to volunteer your time and talents to the best of your ability following Global Volunteers guidelines and policies.

You further agree to the terms outlined in this document.

SERVICE PROGRAM PAYMENT POLICIES
Service Program fees are listed on Global Volunteers’ website at globalvolunteers.org. A $350 nonrefundable deposit, which is applied toward the Service Program fee, is due with this Registration. The balance is due 75 days prior to the scheduled date of arrival. If you submit your Registration within 75 days of the scheduled date of arrival, You must pay a late Registration fee of $35. The Service Program fee does not include visas or airfare. You authorize Global Volunteers to use Your fee for general operating purposes until the Service Program begins.

ADDITIONAL COSTS ARE YOUR RESPONSIBILITY
For international service programs, You will need a valid passport. The Service Program fee covers all meals beginning with dinner on the arrival date, lodging, in-country ground transportation for international programs, administrative expenses, and work project costs, except those expenses You incur during free time. You are responsible for any additional costs You may incur during free time and personal time, and for activities that are outside the Global Volunteers Service Program. Global Volunteers is not responsible for the acts or failures of anyone else who provides services to You.

TRAVEL DEVIATIONS
If You voluntarily deviate from Global Volunteers’ scheduled itinerary, You may not be able to take the costs of the Service Program as a tax deduction.
We recommend that You seek the advice of a tax advisor regarding this matter. (Please inform Global Volunteers of Your travel plans so we can coordinate your arrival and departure with the other members of the team.)

CANCELLATION AND REFUND
Global Volunteers may cancel any Service Program at any time. Global Volunteers may reject Your Registration at any time before departure. Global Volunteers will refund the total amount You paid to Global Volunteers (1) if the Service Program is filled at the time You Register; (2) if Global Volunteers rejects Your Registration for any reason; or (3) if Global Volunteers cancels the Service Program for any reason other than (a) a U.S. State Department travel warning that applies to the country to which You are traveling, or (b) circumstances beyond the control of Global Volunteers. If You cancel Your Service Program for any reason, You must notify Global Volunteers in writing. If you cancel Your Service Program, or if Global Volunteers cancels the Service Program because of a U.S. State Department travel warning or for circumstances beyond the control of Global Volunteers, You will receive a partial refund according to the refund schedule listed below. Global Volunteers will not refund airfare penalties or transfer fees under any circumstance. Global Volunteers will not make refunds for unused portions of the Service Program or because of Your inability to participate according to the scheduled itinerary.

Refund Policy Based on Cancellation Date:
Over 60 days: $350 deposit is not refunded. 100 percent of balance is refunded
60 to 30 days: $350 deposit is not refunded. 55 percent of balance is refunded.
Less than 30 days: $350 deposit is not refunded. 25 percent of balance is refunded.

YOU PARTICIPATE AT YOUR OWN RISK
You acknowledge that there are dangers in traveling to and living and volunteering in the country for which You are registering, some of which are described here. You agree to travel and participate at Your own risk. You agree to assume full responsibility for injury to You, including death and emotional trauma, and damage to or theft of Your property. Global Volunteers is not responsible for the acts or failures of anyone else who provides services to You.

YOU AGREE NOT TO SUE GLOBAL VOLUNTEERS OR THE HOST
You will not sue or bring any action against Global Volunteers or the Host because of the negligence of Global Volunteers or the Host. You will not sue or bring any action against Global Volunteers or the Host because of the negligence or intentional acts of anyone else. If anyone, e.g., you, a family member, spouse, etc., sues or brings any action against Global Volunteers or the Host, or because of the negligence of Global Volunteers or the Host, or because of the negligence or intentional acts of anyone else, You and Your estate shall indemnify and hold harmless Global Volunteers and the Host from all claims, judgments and costs, including reasonable attorney’s fees. You may sue or bring action for intentional acts, gross misconduct or gross negligence caused by Global Volunteers.

YOU AGREE TO FOLLOW RULES AND LAWS
Global Volunteers requires that all volunteers arrive at the designated site by the scheduled Service Program arrival date. You will be the guest of the local people and the Host. You agree to follow all applicable rules, policies and guidelines of Global Volunteers and the Host, as well as the laws of the local country. If You do not follow all rules, laws, policies and guidelines, Global Volunteers’ team leader has the authority to ask You to leave the community and/or lodging facility immediately. If You are asked to leave, You agree to leave immediately. Global Volunteers will help you arrange your transportation to the closest airport.

MINNESOTA LAW CONTROLS
You agree that this Registration is to be construed under the laws of the State of Minnesota, USA. You agree that this Registration is to be construed broadly to provide a release, indemnification and waiver to the maximum extent permissible under applicable law. In signing this Registration, You acknowledge (1) that You have read this entire document, (2) that You understand its terms, (3) that You are at least eighteen (18) years of age, (4) that by signing it You are giving up substantial legal rights You might otherwise have, and (5) that You have signed it knowingly and voluntarily. If any provision of this Registration is unenforceable or too broad to be enforced to its full extent, then that provision and the remaining provisions will be enforced to the maximum extent permitted by law.

Program Precautions

Your success as a Global Volunteer is our goal – and your responsibility.  We urge you to consider these precautions in preparing for your service adventure:

You must accurately assess your functional mobility. Our work assignments and partner communities require varying levels of physical stamina and mobility. When you register, you’ll be advised of the physical criteria you must meet to participate on a team.  Our definitions:

  • Very mobile – Able to walk four miles, climb ten flights of stairs, navigate diverse terrain, and get on and off buses and trains independently.
  • Mobile – Walk one mile, climb five flights of stairs, walk on uneven terrain, and get on and off buses and trains independently.
  • Somewhat mobile – Climb two flights of stairs, walk on uneven terrain, and get on and off buses and trains with assistance.

You must also consider potential health hazards in the host country. We urge you to refer to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta, Ga., USA, for current information on health issues and precautions at www.cdc.gov.

Please report any severe physical limitations, dietary restrictions or chronic health conditions which could cause a medical emergency.  You are ultimately responsible for knowing your own capabilities and understanding that illness and emergencies are an inherent part of travel. While our staff will take every precaution to protect your health and safety on the service program, we advise you of these common risks in many parts of the world: travel by motorcycle, bicycle, train, automobile, aircraft, raft, boat, bus, van or other conveyance; hazardous roads, mountainous terrain, high altitude, undeveloped areas; infrastructure problems (including road maintenance, transportation delays and accommodations); forces of nature such as geographic or climatic conditions; civil unrest or terrorism.

If a U.S. State Department travel warning or circumstances beyond our control causes us to cancel the service program, or if you cancel for any reason, you are entitled to a partial refund:

  • Over 60 days of the arrival date – $350 deposit is not refunded; 100 percent of the balance is refunded
  • 60 to 30 days – $350 deposit is not refunded; 55 percent of the balance is refunded
  • Less than 30 days – $350 deposit is not refunded; 25 percent of the balance is refunded

The $350 nonrefundable deposit may be used on a subsequent service program conducted within one year of the original service program’s arrival date.

Community Project Donations Policy

You may donate online to any of Global Volunteers’ ongoing programs throughout the year. Your contribution is greatly appreciated, and will be directed to the program or purpose you specify.

The significant needs in our partner communities sometimes give rise to volunteers’ desire to independently donate financially to individual residents. While on the surface this can seem generous, in fact, direct donations to individuals most often cause great difficulty in a community and therefore are specifically prohibited by Global Volunteers in order to avoid inequities or appearances of favoritism within the community. Further, donations to host organizations independent of Global Volunteers have been very disruptive. Both actions risk Global Volunteers’ ongoing development partnership. Because donations to Global Volunteers host community projects are an important resource for our partners, we ask you to work through us with your contributions and abide by our formal project donations policy:

As a non-profit organization, our fiscal responsibility is clear, according to U.S. government regulations. Donors are permitted to make tax-deductible contributions to Global Volunteers for specific program needs.. To guard against fraud and avoid the appearance of misappropriation, Global Volunteers staff are not allowed to collect any monetary donations from volunteers while in the host country. However, it is permissible for one or more volunteers to make a monetary or material donation to Global Volunteers host organization or community partner while in country through Global Volunteers staff provided it is for a purpose Global Volunteers has approved and the donation is made to Global Volunteers in the presence of the principle community or organization leader.

Each year, Global Volunteers’ partners provides a list of work project priorities in need of funding for the next fiscal year – 1 October to 30 September. Items on the approved priority list are directly related to the community work project(s) on which the volunteer teams will be working on in the community during the following fiscal year. Global Volunteers’ U.S. office staff raises funds for these priority projects, and manages the disbursement of donations within the host community.

Volunteers are informed of the host community’s work projects donation needs, along with materials that can be taken by the volunteer and used during the service program. Materials that are not specifically needed for a community project, are not allowed to be distributed in the host community by the volunteer or Global Volunteers staff or team leader.

If you are interested in donating funds or materials to a host community, we will work with you to ensure that your contribution is appropriately distributed. Please contact us prior to your service program to arrange for your donation. If you’re not currently scheduled for a service program and would like to donate needed materials to a host community, please contact us to discuss the options available to you.

Fundraising Terms and Conditions

Terms and Conditions
A volunteer-fundraiser can initiate their fundraising webpage at any time. The volunteer fundraiser can begin raising funds via Global Volunteers’ web-based fundraising tool upon completion of the following:

  • Global Volunteers has approved the fundraising page.
  • Volunteer fundraiser has submitted a Service Program Registration and Agreement; and
  • Volunteer fundraiser has submitted a nonrefundable $350 deposit.

The volunteer-fundraiser webpage will remain active until the volunteer-fundraiser requests deactivation or Global Volunteers deactivates the page for lack of fundraising activity. All monies raised via the volunteer-fundraiser’s webpage will be applied either to offset the volunteer-fundraiser’s service program fee or directly to Global Volunteers general fund, pursuant to these Terms and Conditions.

The volunteer-fundraiser should raise/contribute the total service program fee, less the amount of the initial deposit, no later than 75 days prior to the scheduled arrival date of the service program. However, if the volunteer-fundraiser is unable to raise the full amount by that date, his/her place on the service program will be held provided s/he has raised/contributed the following percentages no later than the indicated days prior to the scheduled service program arrival date.

  • 50% by 75 days
  • 65% by 60 days
  • 80% by 45 days
  • 100% by 30 days

In the event the volunteer-fundraiser does not reach his/her fundraising goal and/or is unable to participate on the original scheduled service program, any monies received via the web-based fundraising tool, including the $350 deposit, can be applied to a subsequent service program for which the volunteer-fundraiser submits a Service Program Registration and Agreement. The subsequent service program arrival date can be no later than 24 months from the date the volunteer-fundraiser’s fundraising webpage was activated.

Any funds received in excess of the service program fee can be applied towards the volunteer-fundraiser’s participation on a future service program, provided the volunteer-fundraiser submits a Service Program Registration and Agreement within 12 months of the original service program arrival date. (Note: Global Volunteers generally publishes service program dates 18 to 24 months in advance.) Any excess funds not applied to a future service program will be considered a general donation to Global Volunteers. Attempted donations that are lost, late, misdirected, incorrect, garbled, or incompletely received, for any reason including by reason of hardware, software, browser, or network failure, malfunction, or congestion, will not be credited toward the volunteer-fundraiser’s service program fee.

Cancellation
If the volunteer-fundraiser cancels his/her initial service program participation for any reason, the funds may be transferred, less applicable transfer fees, to a subsequent service program that is scheduled to begin within 24 months from the date the volunteer-fundraiser’s fundraising webpage was activated, provided:

  • The volunteer-fundraiser notified Global Volunteers of his/her cancellation in writing no later than 30 days prior to the scheduled arrival date of the initial service program, and
  • The initial service program was not full at the time the volunteer-fundraiser notified Global Volunteers of his/her intent to cancel, and
  • The volunteer-fundraiser submits a Service Program Registration and Agreement for a subsequent program, and
  • The subsequent program is not full at the time the Service Program Registration and Agreement is submitted.

If Global Volunteers cancels the volunteer-fundraiser’s scheduled service program for any reason, the volunteer-fundraiser may apply all the monies raised to another service program to be conducted within 24 months from the date the volunteer-fundraiser’s fundraising webpage was activated. Funds received directly from the volunteer-fundraiser via cash, money order, or his/her personal check or credit card, will be refunded according to Global Volunteers standard refund policy.

No Refunds
Under no circumstances will any refunds be made to any donor other than the volunteer fundraiser. Any donated funds not applied towards a Global Volunteers service program will be deposited in Global Volunteers general fund and will be available to Global Volunteers for any purpose that Global Volunteers deems appropriate. As such, the service program fee refund policies, as referenced in the Service Program Registration and Agreement, Global Volunteers Adventures in Service Catalog, and on Global Volunteers website, are modified by these Terms and Conditions. Funds received directly from the volunteer-fundraiser via cash, money order, or his/her personal check or credit card, are subject to Global Volunteers standard refund policy.