USA

  • Minimum age

    18

  • Departs

    January or August

  • Duration

    6 – 12 Months

  • Roles Available

    Community Volunteer

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Temporary Programme Suspension

The ongoing COVID-19 crisis has required all of us to adapt and rethink how we conduct business. We have decided to consolidate programming for 2020/21 and reduce our offerings to the destination countries where Lattitude is able to send a greater number of volunteers. This will allow us to work efficiently with reduced staffing while maintaining the high level of support to our volunteers that we pride ourselves in. For this reason, we are temporarily suspending our programmes in Argentina, Ecuador, Guatemala, Japan, USA and Vietnam. We do hope and expect that we will be able to offer these wonderful programmes again in the future. Thank you for your patience and understanding.


 

Gap Year USA!

With vast land mass, regional differences and cultural pockets at every turn, the United States offers a truly diverse array of experiences.

The Lattitude programme in USA puts volunteers in rural communities, helping with daily farming tasks, education and other activities for residents with disabilities. Volunteers live side by side with residents in a family atmosphere creating a unique and rewarding experience for all involved.

Roles Available

Community Volunteer

Our US placements are Community Volunteer opportunities where volunteers live and work in a farming community and assist in a school for people with disabilities.

On the farms, volunteers spend the mornings working alongside residents and other community members doing a wide range of activities such as milking cows, tending the organic gardens, maintenance projects and managing the community store. After a break for lunch, afternoons are spent participating in lessons, art classes and movement activities.

In the school volunteers follow a similar schedule but much of the time is spent supporting younger residents with their curriculum. Volunteers support teachers in the classroom and extracurricular activities like bike riding, art or movement therapy.

Living in community is a hugely rewarding experience. You’ll learn to live with others and share in community life. Volunteers have “family” responsibilities in the home in addition to helping residents complete their tasks throughout the day. Volunteers in our US programme are those who are ready to jump right in and are keen to work and live in groups.

Placements are for 12 months and the longer term is strongly encouraged as it can take a while to settle in, but there may be the possibility for a 6 month placement in some cases.

Placement Locations:

The communities where we place volunteers in the US are all located on gorgeous farms and schools in rural parts of the north eastern United States just outside of New York City and Philadelphia.

Accommodation & Food

Both accommodation and food are provided by the host. Volunteers are usually accommodated in their own bedrooms in modern homes located on the community properties. Each house serves as the living hub for three to six volunteers and a similar number of residents with disabilities.

Travel

Placement locations are in rural communities but all are within a 2-hour train ride of New York City and other cities on the eastern seaboard. Time off is given for holidays so there will be plenty of time to explore and scratch the sight-seeing itch. With so many major metropolitan areas just a short train ride or flight away, there will be plenty to see and do!

Costs

(Please note – we have made several changes recently to ensure our viability during Covid-19 and beyond. One change you may notice is we now list our pricing in US dollars. To convert to your own currency, you can use xe.com)

Lattitude Application Fee – $50 (USD)

The application fee covers the cost of processing applications and conducting interviews.
All applicants are guaranteed an interview. This fee is non-refundable.

Lattitude Placement Fee: $2800 (USD)

This fee is broken into three payments:

Deposit

Once you have been interviewed and accepted into the programme, you will be required to pay a $500USD deposit to secure your position. The deposit covers our costs for identifying, assessing and matching you to a suitable placement.

Under normal circumstances, this is a non-refundable deposit. However, due to the uncertain timeframe of COVID-19 travel restrictions etc, we have adopted a more flexible approach to ensure there is no financial risk to our volunteers proceeding with their Lattitude travel plans.

Your deposit will be refundable if: You have paid your deposit after 11 March 2020 (the date WHO declared COVID-19 to be a pandemic) and if nearing your scheduled departure, as a result of COVID 19, you are still unable to travel, or if, following government advice, your destination is deemed unsafe to do so.

If you are still unable to travel to your first-choice destination, we can work with you to look at alternative destinations at short notice. In the unprecedented scenario of no appropriate departures being available, we will look to reschedule, offer you the opportunity of deferring, or refunds will be made available.

Deposit Update – October 2020

From 8th October 2020, Lattitude will refund deposit payments in the event that Lattitude needs to cancel a specific programme departure due to COVID 19 or if international/government COVID 19 advice is to avoid travel to that destination. Lattitude will always encourage volunteers to consider an alternative destination or to defer travel.

Interim

You will be required to pay an interim payment of $1,000USD no more than 6 months before departure. This payment covers Lattitude costs involved in the pre-departure stage of your placement.

Final

The remainder of the Lattitude fee of $1300USD will be due 60 days prior to your scheduled departure.

 

What’s included?

• In depth matching process to align your skills and interests with a placement that really suits you
• Assigned Volunteer Coordinator to help with all your pre-departure advice and guidance
• Links with returned volunteers
• Advice on obtaining police checks
• Advice on obtaining a Visa
• Pre-departure briefing seminar
• Airport pickup on arrival
• Arrangements for SIM cards & bank accounts
• Accommodation for the duration of stay (either with a host family or on placement site)
• Food provided by host (may not include every meal, but you will know what to expect before your arrival)
• Day to day support from your placement host and a member of staff as your mentor
• 24/7 support from Lattitude, including in-country support from local reps and the Lattitude Country Manager
• Focus on your personal volunteer learning and development
• Returned Volunteer follow up and Debrief Event
• Opportunity to join the Lattitude Alumni Association
• Certificate of completion and references (on request)

What’s not included:

In addition to the Lattitude fees above, volunteers will be required to pay for their own international flights, travel insurance and any visa costs. Lattitude staff will assist you in making these arrangements.

• International Flights
• Travel Insurance
• Visa

• GP medical clearance
• Travel doctor consultation (recommended)
• Vaccinations (if applicable)
• Onward travel to placement (if applicable)
• Pocket Money for weekends/ holidays/post-placement travel
• Accommodation and food during holiday periods

Fundraising

As a charity we always recommend our volunteers to fundraise to help meet the costs involved in volunteering overseas. In many ways it is part of the whole experience. For more information and fundraising ideas please click here.