What Does HEFY Do to Ensure the Safety of My Builder?

HEFY sends Builders to some of the most amazing parts of the world. Usually, that means there may be some things that you’ve never encountered before. Like snorkeling with whale sharks in the Philippines, hiking Machu Picchu in Peru, or navigating the busy marketplace in Ghana. 

Through all of these new experiences, HEFY’s #1 priority will always be the safety of our Builders. Here’s a list of some of the steps we take to protect our favorite teens:

  • Every trip and location is thoroughly vetted by our Program Managers. We get this question a lot: how do you pick what locations you serve in? In addition to our sustainability rubric and analysis of the need each country has, our Program Managers also take into account the safety, accessibility to adequate medical care, and access to airports for quick exits. If you have a question, we’ve probably had them too. Our Local Coordinator’s are the boots on the ground, giving us status updates on political climates, crime rates, and safe areas of the country to travel to. We walk through housing details, what neighborhood we’ll be staying in, and much more. If we wouldn’t send our own child there, we’re not going to send yours. 
  • Our Trip Leaders are top of the line. Hands down. 
    • Every Trip Leader goes through a four to five round interview process. Our Trip Leader acceptance rate is close to 10% of all applicants. Hundreds of applications come through our office each year, and we pick a select few to lead our trips. After making it through three different knock-out rounds, the first thing they hear when they walk into our office for their in-person interview is, “Our #1 priority is our Builders, so we’ll do whatever it takes to make sure they’re Trip Leaders are the best of the best.” 
    • Upon selection, every Trip Leader goes through a 7-Point Background check before officially being accepted onto a trip. Our team works for weeks meticulously walking through every aspect of our Trip Leader candidates backgrounds. From official record checks and social media checks to questions asked of their roommates and ecclesiastical leaders, we cover many different points and feel confident that every Trip Leader is thoroughly vetted. 
    • Every Trip Leader has to attend a three day mandatory training. Three full days of multiple trainings a day. Our Trip Leaders don’t walk into a firehouse of information, but instead are expected to come prepared with our Trip Leader Handbook memorized so these trainings become a review, From CPR trainings to how to handle a Builder who lost their passport, after 21 years of running trips–we have a lot of scenarios and experience to share! 
  • All summer long we have a 24/7 On-Call staff ready to help. Each day, we have an On-Call system three levels deep ready to take any and all emergency calls from Trip Leaders. Every person who is On-Call is properly trained to handle and provide instruction for every situation that arises. From missed flights to appendicitis, our team works through all hours of the night to ensure that no Trip Leader is ever left without answers. The On-Call staff will always keep the parents in the loop, so you’ll never have to wonder if your son or daughter is being taken care of. 
  • Third-party support organizations. In addition to our full-time staff being on-call, we also partner with other organizations who offer support while traveling abroad. To highlight one, SOS International is the world’s leading medical and travel security risk service company. They vet the hospitals and clinics we use and handle all emergency evacuation and security emergencies. Safe to say that HEFY has got you covered.
  • We do not publicly post any information about the Builder schedules or specific locations at any time, and we ask that you do the same. To learn more about things you can do at home to help keep your Builders safe, please see our Parents at Home page on our website!

Not to mention all of the rules that Builders must adhere to while on their trips, we do everything within our power to keep your Builders safe. Afterall, we are in the business of changing lives.