Having a successful trip

Having adequate and accurate information ahead of time and knowing how to get information once in the field are critical to having a positive volunteer experience. This module will provide information—or sources of information—on your health and safety, including what to do in case of an emergency.

Knowing whom to contact, and how to contact them, when you need information and assistance will help you to prepare for your trip properly and to feel confident should any unexpected situation arise once you begin traveling.

Look through the packet you received with your acceptance letter and see who are the primary contact persons at HQ and in the field for your team. Think about things you can do to make contacting the appropriate persons as easy as possible once you begin your trip.

Also be sure to leave your contact information and Medical Teams International contact information with family and/or friends back home in case they need to contact you during your trip. Find out what kind of phone and e-mail access you will have so you and your loved ones will be prepared for being out of touch if this is the situation where you are going.


The best source of information is your country manual, which you received with your acceptance packet. The country manual contains information on issues such as:
  • Customs 
  • Entry requirements 
  • Immunizations (which ones you need and where to get them) 
  • Traveler’s insurance 
  • Finances (expenses, changing money, etc.)  
  • Communication (how to make/receive calls)  
  • Emergency phone numbers (e.g. U.S. embassy) \

Traveler's Resources

Staying healthy

Visit these two Web sites for more information on staying healthy while traveling abroad:

Go to the CDC Web site and find the answers to these questions:

1. What are the common ailments or health risks for foreigners visiting your assigned country?
2. What recommendations are given for travelers to your assigned country?
3. What other helpful information did you find there?

Look in the Yellow Book Chapter 2 for Risks from Food and Water. Read this section.