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Q1. What are your volunteer needs at First Hand Aid?

We have a variety of volunteer opportunities including helping with mailings and assisting with special events. Our biggest need and the most rewarding for our supporters is people who are willing to travel to Cuba with us to transport and deliver supplies to the families and hospitals we work with.

Q2. What is the approximate cost for each trip?

Approximate cost for the trip (including everything except spending money and lunches) is $3200. There are many variables that affect the final price such as the number travelling in the group and how close to the departure date you design to join us. Please fill out the form found on this page to message us and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Q3. I am interested in transporting supplies to Cuba. What are your requirements to participate?

To travel to Cuba with First-Hand aid, volunteers must have:

  • Flexibility with travel dates
  • An open-minded perspective to this very unique travel experience and the circumstances that exist in Cuba.
  • A valid passport
  • Good Health
  • No Criminal History (misdemeanors or felonies)
  • An interest in helping the children and families in Cuba.

First-Hand Aid is certified as an aid organization by both the American and Cuban governments. We are licensed by the U.S. Treasury Department and the U.S. Commerce Department.

Our Volunteers are able to legally travel to Cuba as humanitarian aid workers under our license with the U.S. government. restrictions relating to Cuba. Is it Legal to Travel to Cuba and distribute supplies?

First-Hand Aid is certified as an aid organization by both the American and Cuban governments. We are licensed by the U.S. Treasury Department and the U.S. Commerce Department.

Q5. Why don't you ship the supplies to Cuba instead of hand-delivering it?

At First-Hand Aid, we never ship supplies. By travelling with the supplies, we are able to ensure that everything reaches the people who need it the most.

Q6. What should I expect as a volunteer traveling to Cuba with First Hand Aid?

Volunteers travel with luggage that contains the supplies that we transport to Cuba. While in Cuba, our volunteers visit the hospitals, clinics and individual homes to deliver the aid. As a volunteet, you get to meet the people who receive the aid, talk with them, and learn more about their families and their lives. Volunteers with First-Hand Aid have established and maintained meaningful relationships with the families they have met in Cuba. Getting involved at a personal level is a hallmark for our organization.

Q7. Who manages the travel arrangements?

First-Hand Aid coordinates all travel arrangements for volunteers.

Because there are no flights from U.S. Cities to Cuba, our Volunteer groups drive to Toronto an fly directly from Toronto to Havana.

While in Cuba, our volunteers stay in casas (peoples homes). This is not the most inexpensive way to stay, but it is the best way to dive into the Cuban culture.

Typically, breakfast is provied by the Cuban families with whom our volunteers stay with. Other meals are arranged by First-Hand Aid. Finally, First-Hand Aid handles all travel clearances that must be obtained by the U.S. and Cuban governments.

Q8. Do I need to be able to speak Spanish to travel to Cuba with First-Hand Aid?

No. Translators are readily available as needed.

Q9. What level of Commitment do you expect from your volunteers?

Our volunteers are expected to spend about a week in Cuba. After volunteers return, we hope that they will continue to support First-Hand Aid financially or volunteering through our various events held in the U.S.

Q10. What is the cost for volunteers who travel to Cuba?

Volunteers pay travel costs which include airfare, meals and administrative fees. The cost can vary significantly based on a variety of factors such as the cost of airfare during peak periods opposed to off- season travel. Another contributing factor is how far in advance tickets are booked and also the size of the group that will be traveling at the same time.

 

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