*Updated 11/10/2021*

Guidelines Subject to Change

Guidelines Subject to Change

The safety of our volunteers, hosts, and partners is our highest concern. We have established the following safety precautions and hygiene practices to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Volunteers are also required to abide by all host, local, state and federal COVID-19 guidelines. 

GENERAL:

  • While Volunteer Vacations are operating with additional safety precautions in place, there are still inherent risks associated with travel and gathering in small groups outside of your household. Individuals must make their own decision using their best judgment and risk tolerance about whether to participate in a Volunteer Vacation.
  • All volunteers will be required to show proof of full CDC approved COVID-19 vaccination at the time of registration except when prohibited by applicable law. Full COVID-19 vaccination means that an individual has received the first and second dose of any two-dose vaccines, or their single shot of any one-dose vaccine. In the event the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issues guidance that effectively modifies what it means to be fully vaccinated, this policy will be supplemented accordingly. 
  • What can be used as proof of vaccination?
    • A vaccine card or photo of vaccine card.
    • Documented proof of vaccination from medical records or vaccine provider.
  • Volunteers who are unvaccinated or who cannot prove vaccination status will be required to show proof of a negative molecular COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of the start of the Volunteer Vacation. If a volunteer is unable to provide proof of vaccination or a negative PCR COVID-19 test within 72 hours of the start of the Volunteer Vacation, they will not be permitted to join the trip. To ensure everyone’s safety, unvaccinated individuals are highly discouraged from joining trips with indoor accommodations.
  • In addition to AHS’ guidelines, volunteers will also be required to abide by all local, state and federal COVID-19 travel and group regulations and any additional safety requirements as required by individual hosts. This may include requiring a negative COVID test, quarantine before and after arrival, be fully vaccinated, wearing masks indoors when not eating, or other requirements upon entering that state.
  • AHS recommends that all volunteers stay up to date and follow the Center for Disease Control’s Domestic Travel Guidelines before, during and after their Volunteer Vacation, which includes wearing a mask when traveling, remaining socially distant from those outside your household, self-isolating and testing prior to and upon return of your trip, and continually monitoring yourself for COVID-19 symptoms. 
  • All trip participants must provide their own health and accident insurance in case of injury or illness while on their trip. Please consider purchasing trip cancellation insurance to cover you in the event that you are no longer able to participate in your scheduled trip. Trip cancellation insurance protects you against financial loss if you must cancel a trip because of illness or injury to yourself, a family member, or traveling companion.
  • AHS or any of its partners can neither be held responsible for potential transmission of nor exposure to COVID-19 on the trip and during travel to and from the trip.

BEFORE THE TRIP:

  • Continually monitor your current health and potential exposure to COVID-19:
    • People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. If you have any of these symptoms, you may have COVID-19 and we ask that you contact us and remain at home.
  • Do not travel or participate in a volunteer vacation if you are sick with or tested positive for COVID-19, were recently exposed (within 14 days) to someone with COVID-19 (even if you don’t have symptoms), or just don’t feel well (see symptoms above).
  • While traveling to and from the trip, vaccinated individuals may coordinate ride sharing and carpooling as they choose and according to personal preferences, local, state and federal guidance. We require that all volunteers follow CDC travel requirements including wearing masks while in airports, airplanes, shared cars, public spaces and airport shuttles while traveling to and from the Volunteer Vacation. 

DURING THE TRIP:

  • All volunteers must carry and wear a face mask when directed by the host, local, state or federal guidance. 
  • Per the CDC’s guidance, unvaccinated volunteers must wear facemasks at all times when traveling, when indoors and when social distancing is not available outdoors.
  • AHS requires that all volunteers follow the CDC’s guidance on gathering safely with those outside your household. AHS strongly recommends that vaccinated individuals wear a facemask when indoors and when social distancing is not available outdoors and in areas of substantial or high transmission.
  • All volunteers are asked to maintain good personal hygiene practices including washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before you eat, after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. 
  • Volunteers must wear their own work gloves and refrain from sharing throughout the week.

MANAGING SUSPECTED COVID-19 ON THE TRIP:

  • Those exhibiting symptoms of illness will also need to self-isolate from others and leave the trip immediately. AHS strongly urges that the individual seek immediate medical attention at the nearest facility.
  • AHS cannot provide evacuation services. For cases where a volunteer is ill with suspected COVID-19 and incapacitated such that they cannot get themselves to a medical facility, an ambulance will be called immediately at the expense of the individual. AHS will not cover the cost of any medical or evacuation services.
  • Anyone with a fever or exhibiting symptoms of suspected COVID-19 must quarantine themselves (stay completely away from anyone who is not a member of their household and stay away from any surface touched by others) while they are preparing to leave.