Frequently Asked Questions about HANDS Teams

How is a HANDS Team formed?

Teams are organized primarily through Team Leaders or Co-leaders. Usually, someone who is interested in leading a HANDS Team contacts EduDeo to discuss possible destinations and travel dates with the HANDS Coordinator. The Team Leader then recruits others to join the team from their church, workplace and/or community. The HANDS Coordinator stays in constant communication with the Team Leader throughout the entire process to provide information and assistance wherever possible.

How many people form a HANDS Team?

A HANDS Team is typically made up of 8-12 people.

How old do I have to be to be part of a HANDS Team?

Participants range in age from energetic youth to experienced retirees. Participants under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.  Minors under 18 must have notarized consent from their parent(s) or legal guardian.

How long is a HANDS trip?

HANDS trips are usually 7-10 days in length, including travel days, work days, a worship day and a cultural day.

Where do HANDS Teams travel?

Currently, EduDeo sends Teams to the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Belize and Zambia.

Do I need to be a skilled construction worker?

We welcome all levels of skill and ability. HANDS Teams are not just about the work that they do while in another country. Much more emphasis is placed on the relationships you build with your teammates and the local people through service and learning.

How much does a HANDS trip cost?

Costs vary depending on destination and duration. They start at $2,000/person to Central American countries and at $3,800/person to African countries. Costs include flights, accommodations, food, in-country transportation, and funds for the construction project you will be working on. Also included is a ministry fee that helps EduDeo ensure that the project you are working on truly does have a long-term impact and is part of a larger picture of responsible international development.

Isn't it more effective to send the funds a HANDS Team raises to the partner without travelling there?

There is much debate surrounding the concept of sending short-term work teams on mission trips. EduDeo is well aware of the issues surrounding cross-cultural missions and believes the HANDS program plays an important role in responsible, international development. Read more about the main benefits and outcomes of a HANDS trip…

Do I have to book my own flights?

EduDeo takes care of all travel plans and logistics for your Team.

Can I add a vacation onto my HANDS trip?

We ask HANDS members to refrain from adding vacation/travel time in the destination country because:

  • It negatively affects both team unity and cohesion;
  • It creates a negative perception when you take advantage of a mission trip to go on vacation;
  • It jeopardizes our ability to legally give tax receipts for the travel portion of your trip.

What role does EduDeo play on a HANDS Team?

EduDeo works teams through the whole process — from team formation to post trip de-briefing. We encourage you and share what we have learned from our experience. We offer you a Team Leader Training day, resource manuals, visits from and presentations by the HANDS Coordinator, and all travel plans and logistical arrangements.

What does a typical day on a HANDS trip look like?

A typical "work day" on a HANDS trip consists of time spent at the school construction site, meals prepared by the local people and a devotional/worship time with your Team. Often HANDS Teams will appoint a Spiritual Leader for their Team alongside the Team Leader to ensure time is spent in prayer and discussion about what God is teaching them through the experience.

Can I smoke and/or drink while on a HANDS trip?

Alcohol and smoking are not allowed while in the host country. EduDeo asks that all participants abstain from these practices because of the negative connotations that are associated with their use among Christians in the countries HANDS Team travel to.

Do I need travel health insurance to be part of a HANDS Team?

Each participant must have international travel health insurance. 

What if I have more questions?

Contact our office or email the HANDS Coordinator to learn more!