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Dominican Republic Missions Trip

Trip information

Where do I begin?
  • Step 1: Come to the MISSIONS Info Gathering under the Latham Campus Pavilion on Sunday, June 13 from 12:30 -1PM, or 6:30 pm Zoom Gathering either Monday, June 14 or Thursday, June 17. Alternate location if inclement weather: Classroom A
  • Step 2: Come to the first team meeting, Sunday, June 27, 12:30pm @ Grace Latham Pavilion, located behind the church. Alternate location if inclement weather: Classroom A.
Trip Dates

October 22 – 29, 2021 (Friday – Friday, 8-days)
Note, if you can’t make our trip in October’21, our next DR trip will be June 22 – 26, 2022

Application Deadline

Friday, June 25, along with your $200 deposit. This deposit is required when you submit your application to solidify your commitment to this trip. The cost of the trip, and all donations & deposits are non-refundable.

Who can go?
We love families, seniors and singles too! Teens are welcome when accompanied by a relative. No experience or special skills
required.
Who are the trip leaders?

Julian Moreau, 518-982-9430, Mike Ungerland, 518-810-1679,

Contact either one for a trip application. They will assist you every step of the way on your journey.

What does the trip cost?

We don’t have the airline tickets or the travel insurance purchased yet, but we’re figuring around $1,600. A $200. deposit is required when you submit your application to solidify your commitment to this trip. The cost of the trip is non-refundable. All support, donations, and deposits are non-refundable.

*Important Note: The $200 deposit is non-refundable in all circumstances. That being said, the following policy applies only to the October ’21 DR mission trip. In the event this mission trip is canceled or postponed because of extenuating circumstances defined by the Missions Department, Grace Fellowship will allow the team member credit on account (not a refund), for support raised. That amount will be credit towards the trip cost for any future Grace Fellowship mission trip. If you have medical verification from your doctor of an illness or injury and are not fit to travel, this same policy is valid and will be applied after the Travel Insurance has been utilized and subject to approval by the Missions Department.

What does the cost include?
Airfare, all ground costs, travel/trip insurance; COVID testing, 72-hours before traveling.

Cost does NOT include meals or snacks/drinks during layovers or at the airport, other out-of-pocket expenses such as immunizations, passport fees, or renewing your passport.

Team Training Meetings

There will be 6-7 team-training meetings. Team members are expected to attend all training meetings. Your attendance is
mandatory unless you are excused or other accommodations are made by the trip leader prior to the meeting date. Plus, there will
be a debriefing meeting in early November.

Medical staff on the team

Medical staff on the team

•PA and trip leader, Michael Ungerland
•RN Nurse, Loretta Crotty

Mike and Loretta will take charge of the team’s health concerns including negative testing for you within 72 hours of departure. A protocol plan exists if someone happens to get ill on the trip.

COVID-19 Vaccine Required
 

All team mates will be required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19.
Bring your COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card with you on the trip.

Other Vaccinations

No other vaccinations are required to enter the country however we urge you to consult the CDC web site and your personal
physician. For your health and the safety of the people we will be serving in the DR, it makes sense that you are up-to-date on
routine vaccines before the trip. These vaccines include measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine, and your yearly flu shot (optional).
Note: Immunizations are not included in the trip cost.

COVID Testing
A negative test within 72 hours of departure from Albany and again within 72 hours of departure from the DR is required.

Cost covered in your trip cost.

Passport

If you don’t have a passport, apply as soon as possible. If you have a passport, it must be valid till May 2022.  If it is not, it’s time to renew it.

In person:  https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/need-passport/apply-in-person.html

Online: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/how-apply.html

Accomadations
https://scoreintl.org/trips/dominican-republic/

Score International is located in the town of Juan Dolio. It is on the southern shore of the island, about 20 minutes east of the SDQ airport.  Score provides a modern, spacious facility that cares for hundreds of mission teams a year. It’s a very safe environment with 24-hour security, delicious meals, air-conditioned transportation, only minutes from the ocean by foot.  Each person on the team will have their own private air-conditioned room with bathroom with shower. 

What will I be eating?

All meals will be eaten at SCORE’s brand new, spacious dining hall. There will be a variety of food served, such as spaghetti, rice, and chicken, taco salad, chicken fettuccine, rice and beans, sandwiches, etc. Breakfast will be various fruit, eggs, pancakes, juices, and plenty of DR coffee!  

Important Allergy Information – If there are any food allergies, please inform us before your trip. You can bring your own specialty food items, your epi-pen, and any other medications. You cannot get these items on your trip.

What will I be doing there?
Reaching the lost will be our heartbeat, and sharing God’s Word & love that changes lives is the ultimate mission.  There are tons of fun opportunities to serve, building relationships and life-long friendships with brothers and sisters in Christ and bringing hope to others that we have found through a personal relationship with Christ.  No experience is necessary, just a heart willing to love others, giving mercy to children & adults of all ages. 
DR History
The Dominican Republic shares the island Hispaniola with the country of Haiti. It is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea. Nearly 80% of the country’s 49,000 sq. km. is covered with mountains, but some 20 different topographical areas exist in the country. About 2.5 million of the country’s 10 million residents live in the capital, Santo Domingo. Over 10% of the population is of Haitian descent. Roman Catholicism is the country’s official religion and about 85% of the people profess this. About half of the population is believed to be involved in occult practices. Average annual income is $5,000 per person.
Packing
There is no laundry service except what you hand wash in your bathroom. Plan on packing the majority of your personal gear in your carry-on luggage. The majority of your checked baggage will be used for outreach supplies. You will be provided a packing list at the team meeting.
Language
If you speak Spanish, that’s awesome, but not required.  Any Spanish you can practice is a big bonus but no worries, we will have interpreters.
Climate
Average high temperature in October is 87, low 76.  The Dominican Republic experiences some of the effects of the Atlantic hurricane season, which lasts from June 1 to Nov. 30 so it is possible we could see some rain.
Currency
The currency is the Dominican Peso. The dollar value in terms of the peso varies from day to day. The team leaders will let you know when and where you may exchange money. It is best to exchange small amounts at a time as you can NOT exchange back into dollars once you have pesos.

COVID-19 Q&A

Will we be required to have the vaccine for COVID prior to traveling?

 Yes. The current CDC guidelines strongly encourage vaccination and we will be following these guidelines. Everyone participating in the trip must have received their final vaccine 2 weeks prior to the trip and provide documentation of such.

Are there COVID variants in the Dominican Republic that we will be at risk for?

Yes. Because the COVID virus is a rapidly mutating virus, much like influenza, variants of COVID exist and will continue to develop. There are over 743 different influenza virus variants and it is expected that COVID will continue to mutate similarly.  Being fully vaccinated is our very best protection against COVID.

Do we have to test for COVID prior to traveling to the Dominican Republic and upon our return?

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS:  Our missionary host in the DR, SCORE International requires a negative test within 72 hours of departure from the US.  Grace Fellowship will coordinate this test with you, and the cost is covered. 

 

In addition, airports and other ports of entry will perform a quick, aleatory breath test to between 3% and 15% of passengers, and all those who present symptoms, upon arrival. Passengers under the age of five and crew members are exempt from this procedure. All passengers will also need to perform a temperature check. Passengers who present symptoms or whose test results are positive will be isolated and attended at authorized locations. Prior to departure, travelers should confirm with their airline provider and airport of origin regarding any testing or other related requirements for inbound flights to the Dominican Republic, or necessary requirements needed upon arrival to their country of origin.

 

RETURN REQUIREMENTS:

All passengers coming  to the United States, including U.S. citizens and fully vaccinated people, are required to have a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 72 hours before travel or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 in the past 3 months before they board a flight to the United States.  This test will be provided by SCORE International on site.  And yes, it’s a PCR test and the cost is covered by Grace Fellowship.

What happens if someone in our group gets sick when we are on mission?

If someone should be ill, we have an infirmary with an American doctor on-site and Michael Ungerland is accompanying the team and is a Registered Physician Assistant with the State of New York and Nationally Certified with 20 years of Emergency Medicine and Urgent Care experience.  He will also have a medical kit with the essentials on his person. Additionally, Grace Fellowship will be purchasing travel insurance through our travel agent for each member of the trip. This expense is included in the trip cost. We urge travelers to contact their health insurance company about traveling internationally and know their health insurance coverage in the event the trip-goer becomes ill in the DR .

What criteria will need to occur in order to cancel the trip to the Dominican Republic?

Grace Fellowship follows strictly the guidance by the NYS Department of State and the CDC and we keep a constant pulse on this guidance and will keep you posted as much as possible.

Contact us!

For more information on this trip or our 2022 mission trips to Peru, Guatemala, Uganda, and Toronto.

Be prepared to be very flexible,  Plans change daily.

Look for something amazing to happen in your life on this trip. Come prepared to be stretched by God!