The Ardeo Short-Term Missions Handbook

Everything you need to know to change hearts and change the world through short-term missions.

Table of Contents:

Introduction

Facilities and amenities

Airports and flights

Basic information

Currency and Documentation

Food and Water Information

Photography on the field

Health and Medical

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

 
 
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Introduction

History

Ardeo Global is a 501(c)(3) non-profit ministry based in Boise, Idaho; formerly known as Extreme Nazarene Missions (2005-2018). The goal of Ardeo Global is to make disciples who make disciples. This "domino" effect is how we will change hearts and change the world. We deploy missionary teams around the world to plant new churches. By the grace of God we have sent 360 long-term missionaries to 10+ countries, planted 94 new churches, and led 10,000’s of people to become Christ followers. We believe that God wants to use the boldness, passion, and adventurous spirit of young adults to make a difference in the nations with the name of Jesus.

What does “ardeo” mean?

"Ardeo" is a Latin word that means "to be on fire, to burn, or to blaze with passion". Our hope is that we would be on fire with the Word of God, burning with passion for Jesus, and blazing new trails with the Holy Spirit to send missionaries from every nation to every nation!

Our Purpose & Mission

Our purpose is to seek and deploy people into an extreme global expansion of God’s Kingdom by prayerfully and thoughtfully engaging the specific talents, skills, experience and resources God gave them and to develop them into permanent, full-time constructors of the Kingdom.

Our mission is to change the world one heart at a time. For us, that is stepping into the radical adventure of missions that Christ invites us into through church planting. We are looking for those who have a passion in their heart to build community to change hearts and change the world.

Importance of Short-Term Missions

Short-term teams serving with Ardeo are not designed like many “typical” short-term mission trips.  The biggest difference is that when you are a part of our short-term team you will always be partnering with our ministry teams that are currently serving on the ground in the city where you are going.  

This means that you will be working alongside a team who has built and will continue to build lasting and meaningful relationships with nationals.  They serve as a physical representation of Jesus’ love, forgiveness, grace, and truth. All activities and events are designed to help the church planting team build, strengthen, and grow lasting relationships.  You can have peace of mind knowing you are not making an initial contact with an individual during your trip who will have to find their own way to Christ. Rather you connect them with a team who will help them connect with the church.  This church will continue to care for their spiritual development and encourage them to share the good news they have learned with others.

Short-term Teams are essential for our church plants as they:

  • Allow our teams to plan larger events and more outreach activities

  • Help draw crowds and promote events

  • Bring different skills than those our church planting team possesses

  • Provide energy and renewed excitement about the work being done

  • Uplift our church planting team emotionally, mentally, and spiritually

  • Bring additional items/supplies to our teams

  • Provide long-term support and encouragement by praying for and staying in touch with our teams

  • Generate more excitement and support for the work being done, by sharing their experiences with others when they return home

Communities sending individuals on a short-term team also greatly benefit because when the individuals return, they are more excited to be involved in missions in their own area back home

Handbook Contents:

Introduction

Facilities and amenities

Airports and flights

Basic information

Currency and Documentation

Food and Water Information

Photography on the field

Health and Medical

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

 
 
edited.jpg
 

Basic Information

Personal Responsibilities

When you register for a short-term trip with Ardeo you are committing to:

  • Complete all paperwork on time

  • Pay for all costs associated with your trip on or before deadlines

  • Ensure you communicate any health concerns or medical conditions (accurately & completely)

  • Respectfully follow the guidelines given to you by Ardeo staff members

  • Update Ardeo if your needs/status change

  • Maintain a Christ-like attitude

Code of Conduct

All conduct shall be in compliance with Ardeo Global’s purpose as previously stated.

Teams are representative of Ardeo Global and, more importantly, Jesus Christ.  Therefore, they demonstrate His love to those being served as well as each other.  

While a part of an Ardeo short-term team (including traveling to/from the destination) you may not:

  • Use offensive/unclean language

  • Tell inappropriate jokes

  • Use tobacco products, alcohol, or drugs for any purpose other than are medically prescribed

  • Wear clothing that is tight, revealing, or culturally inappropriate
    (specific guidelines and suggestions will be sent in an email about a month before your trip)

Team members must attend all devotion, debrief, and sharing times while on the field.

Flexibility is essential when on a short-term trip.  Often things that were planned may change on the day of the activity, possibly when you arrive for the activity, or even during the activity.  Ardeo staff will do their best to keep you up-to-date and informed of changes as they arise. An attitude of flexibility is a necessary part of a successful short-term team.  As you let God work, you may find that something amazing happens because the team was flexible with changes!

Statement of Belief  

We believe in one God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We believe that the Old and New Testament Scriptures, given by plenary inspiration, contain all truth necessary to faith and Christian living. We believe that man is born with a fallen nature, and is, therefore, inclined to evil and that continually. We believe that the finally impenitent are hopelessly and eternally lost. We believe that the atonement through Jesus Christ is for the whole human race; and that whosoever repents and believes on the Lord Jesus Christ is justified and regenerated and saved from the dominion of sin. We believe that believers are to be sanctified wholly, subsequent to regeneration, through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that the Holy Spirit bears witness to the new birth, and also to the entire sanctification of believers. We believe that our Lord will return, the dead will be raised, and the final judgment will take place.  

While representing Ardeo, a short-term team member must conduct himself or herself in a manner aligned with and with respect for the Duties and Responsibilities, Code of Conduct and Statement of Belief of Ardeo. All short-term team members are also expected to abide by all general and project specific policies.

Safety Essentials

Always strictly adhere to the safety guidelines given by Ardeo staff members when on the field.  These are put in place to keep everyone safe. If you don’t understand a certain rule/guideline, ask about it. Follow what is asked of you even if you don’t fully understand the reasoning.  You are responsible to protect your own health and the health of your fellow team members. Inform your team leader and Ardeo staff immediately if you have a health concern or are aware of a potential safety issue.  

To have the best possible experience, follow these guidelines:

 
  • Stay Hydrated
    (Don’t drink tap water or eat ice)

  • Get a Sufficient Amount of Rest
    (Take breaks when you need them)

  • Use Proper Safety Gear (if applicable)

  • Never Go Out Alone
    (Always in groups of 2+, 3+ is preferable)

  • Tell a Leader or Staff Member if you are Leaving a Ministry Location

  • Stay with the Group

  • Be Aware of Your Surroundings &
    Potential Dangers

  • Alert Others if You See Something Suspicious/Dangerous/Bothersome

  • Always Follow the Guide of the Ardeo Team Members

 

Grievance Procedures

If you have an issue before leaving or after returning to the US, please start by talking to your local team leader (if applicable).  If you are unable to resolve the issue with a local leader or there is not a local leader, then contact the Short-Term Team Coordinator by emailing stmissions@ardeo.org to discuss the issue.

If you have an issue on the field, please start by talking to the local Ardeo team leadership on the field (ex: Team Support Couple, Lead 40/40, etc.).  If you are unable to resolve the issue with the local Ardeo team leadership on the field, then contact the Short-Term Team Coordinator by emailing stmissions@ardeo.org to discuss the issue.

Questions

If you have questions regarding short-term team trip options, please contact the Short-Term Team Coordinator.  You can reach the coordinator by emailing stmissions@ardeo.org.

Donations and Payments

Payments of any kind to Ardeo Global are considered income tax deductible donations and are made with the understanding that Ardeo Global has complete discretion and control over the use of all the funds. All payments are non-refundable unless otherwise stated.

All short-term packages include:

• International Travel/Medical Insurance • Food • Lodging • Local Transportation
• Impact Materials • Project Equipment • Site Logistics & Oversight
• Emergency Contingency • Cost of Participation (including Administration Overhead)
• Airfare & Missionary Blessing List Supplies are in addition to price***

Ardeo shall provide all services required to book and purchase flights. Ardeo will estimate the airfare cost from registrant’s departure city and add that estimate to the price quoted. Ardeo shall purchase airfare on behalf of registrant only after having received complete passport information and receiving sufficient funds to cover airfare cost in full. Registrant is responsible for 100% of actual flight costs, even if the cost exceeds the original quote by Ardeo or its partners. Payment sufficient to cover 100% of flight cost is due to Ardeo at least 90 days prior to travel. Payment in full for the entire package including flight costs, is required 60 days prior to travel. Any registration that does not comply with all policies above may be canceled without refund.  Airfare includes 1 checked bag per person.

***Missionary Blessing List supplies are items requested by Ardeo Missionaries to help accomplish the mission or that will benefit them personally. Short-term Missionaries are invited, but not obligated, to help procure Missionary Blessing List items.***

Emergency Procedures

If you have an emergency before leaving the US, contact your local team leader (if applicable) or the Short-Term Team Coordinator by emailing: stmissions@ardeo.org or reaching out through the phone number provided to you at the time of registration.

If you have an emergency or travel issue while on your way to/from your trip destination, appoint a short-term team leader to contact the Short-Term Team Coordinator of the situation.  The Short-Term Team Coordinator will alert the Ardeo field team of the situation and will assist with communication to help the short-term team resolve the issue. The short-term team leader will also work with the airport staff to adjust any travel plans and arrangements as necessary.  If it is a medical emergency, seek medical attention immediately, then contact the Short-Term Team Coordinator or appoint someone to do so.

If you have an emergency while on the field, follow the procedures outlined in the orientation you receive in the first 24 hours after arriving to the field.

Requirements

Medical/Health Form

You are required to fill out an online form with some emergency and basic health information, so that we know of any allergies or important medical conditions.  The link to this form is included in your registration confirmation email.


Background Check

If you are 16 years old or older, you are required to complete a background check within the past 12 months through Ardeo’s process before participating in an Ardeo trip. This includes a national criminal and sex offender registry search.

After registration a link will be sent to you with instructions about how to complete this process.   The results from the background check must be in our possession before we will purchase airfare for you.  That means we will need to have proof of your background check at least 100 days before the date of your travel since we purchase airfare around 90 days before the trip.  

The cost of your background check is included in your trip cost.


Emergency Contact

Your designation for emergency contact is included in the required Medical/Health Form.


Passport Information

A passport is required for all international travel (outside the USA).  The cost of applying/renewing your visa is an additional expense incurred by the short-term team member.  Passports can take several months to receive, so if a new or renewal application is necessary, we suggest you start that process ASAP.  Once the passport is obtained you need to submit the full legal name (as it appears on the passport), birthdate, passport number, issue date, and expiration date to the Short-term Team Coordinator.  This information is needed to ensure that your travel documents are in order and is used to acquire flights and travel insurance.


Parental Consent Form (when necessary)

If you are under 18 years old and are traveling without a parent, you will need to fill out & notarize a Parental Consent Form designating another individual going on the trip as the guardian/custodian of the child for the duration of the trip.  The original notarized copy of this form should be carried with the child’s passport during the trip. After the form has been notarized a PDF or JPEG of the form must be sent to the Short-Term Team Coordinator via email, so that it can be shared with the Ardeo staff on the ground.

Introduction

Facilities and amenities

Airports and flights

Basic information

Currency and Documentation

Food and Water Information

Photography on the field

Health and Medical

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

 
 
edited.jpg
 

Food and Water Information

Water & Dehydration

It is extremely important to stay hydrated during your trip as your body adjusts to many changes and new environments.  Due to airplanes often being dry zones, staying hydrated before departure facilitates a better beginning experience for you.  While you are on your trip, it is not advisable to drink tap water or to choose ice unless the Ardeo team says it is safe. We do recommend bringing a refillable water bottle that you can fill where our ground team shows you is safe.  It is safe to drink bottled water and sometimes it will be provided for you. If you would like more, you can purchase additional bottles at local shops/stores. If you know you have a sensitive stomach, it may be best to brush your teeth with bottled water as an extra layer of precaution.

Fruits & Vegetables

Since fruits & vegetables may not be washed well or may have been washed with tap water, you should avoid eating them unless you know they have been properly washed or are peeled.  Refer to what the Ardeo team recommends when out at a restaurant or in someone’s home.

Food Preparation

Often you may not know how food has been handled or whether it was properly prepared when it is being sold by a street vendor, so it is best not to take a chance.  Just because a local is not affected by a food, does not automatically make it safe for you since their digestive system is used to things yours may not be. When in doubt, it is often better NOT to take a chance (the exception would be during a home visit, where it may be culturally inappropriate to turn down food or drink).  Always ask an Ardeo team member if you would like to try something you are unsure of, they can better advise you of the risk potential.

Respect for Hosts/Home visits

When going to home visits with team members, it is important to be respectful and culturally sensitive.  Often it is disrespectful and insulting to decline meals/food/drinks even if you just had a meal or can tell the family doesn’t have much.  Please follow the Ardeo team member’s lead about accepting/declining when in a host’s home. If you have a personal reason you can’t accept something, talk to the Ardeo team member about why and they will assist you.

Handbook Contents:

Introduction

Facilities and amenities

Airports and flights

Basic information

Photography on the field

Food and Water Information

Currency and Documentation

Health and Medical

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

 
 
edited.jpg
 

Health and Medical Information

Immunizations

Vaccination recommendations vary depending on the country and city.  A separate email will be sent to share the recommendations for your trip.  Please visit the Center for Disease Control (CDC) website for more information and up-to-date news.  You can also reach out to our on-staff nurse, Jill Tibbs (jtibbs@ardeo.org) or to the Short-Term Team Coordinator (stmissions@ardeo.org) with questions.

You should talk with your provider to determine the best course of action for you personally.  

Many vaccinations need to be taken in series prior to travel, so don’t delay!

Health Insurance

Your current (USA) health insurance will cover you while you are traveling in the US.  Ardeo Global will purchase international travel & medical insurance for you as part of the trip cost you pay.

Medication (Personal)

Please be sure to have a sufficient supply of any medications you personally take regularly and be sure to carry all of them with you in your carry-on bags, not your checked bags.  Plan ahead and have a few extra days’ worth of medication with you just in case there is a travel delay at any point.

It is recommended that you carry a dated and signed letter from your doctor listing any prescription medications, dosage instructions, and reason for taking the medicines to document why you have them with you.  Please include any special instructions or needs such as diabetic lancets or needles. If you have a known chronic medical condition or allergy, wear a medical bracelet and remind the Ardeo team of your specific needs.

Mosquito Borne Illnesses

There is more information available about these diseases, possible prevention, and potential risks in the vaccination email sent separately and on the CDC website.  We recommend you consult your doctor to determine the best course of action for you personally.

Upset Stomach/Intestinal Issues

You can reduce the potential for upset stomach and intestinal issues by following all instructions given to you by the Ardeo team, especially regarding what is acceptable for eating & drinking.  In general: you should not drink tap water, say no to ice (often made with tap water), and don’t eat street food, unless otherwise directed. It is good practice to bring Pepto-Bismol or your preferred over-the-counter medication to relieve upset stomach.  It is recommended to have an anti-diarrheal and laxative medication on hand in case you need them as your body adjusts to different foods and a different environment for a few weeks.

Introduction

Facilities and amenities

Airports and flights

Basic information

Photography on the field

Food and Water Information

Currency and Documentation

Health and Medical

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

 
 
edited.jpg
 

Facilities and Amenities

Electricity

You will have access to electricity while you are on your trip, but it may be different from what you may be used to or available only for certain times of the day.  More of the specific information about what voltage of electricity will be available for your trip will be provided in the email sent about 5-6 weeks before your trip. That email will also include recommendations for adaptors/converters.

Telephone/Email Communication

You may bring a personal cell phone and/or laptop if you choose at your own risk and responsibility.  Understand that access to Wi-Fi and cell service may fluctuate and/or be unavailable. If you choose to bring your personal cell phone and wish to pay for an international calling service/plan that will be at your own expense.  You can choose to use your device over Wi-Fi only when it is available. There will always be an Ardeo staff with a phone in case of an emergency. Wi-Fi is not guaranteed but will likely be available either where you are staying or at the Ardeo staff house/headquarters, so you can communicate with family back home.  Be prepared that you will likely not be able to communicate every day. It is important to be focused and present while you are on your trip. Please keep communication with home to essentials and prepare loved ones that your communication will likely be infrequent.

Bathroom Facility

Specific amenities will vary depending on the trip location.  More details will be given to you when you arrive. Be prepared that:

    • Toilets may not accept toilet paper (toilet paper often goes in a trash can on the side, so it doesn’t clog the plumbing).

    • Toilet paper may not be provided (it is good practice to bring a roll of your own).

    • Toilets may not flush.

    • There may not be running water to wash your hands (if there is, it will likely be cold).

    • There may not be any soap (bring hand sanitizer).

Please be respectful and follow the instructions given to you by Ardeo staff to avoid problems.

Handbook Contents:

Introduction

Facilities and amenities

Airports and flights

Basic information

Photography on the field

Food and Water Information

Currency and Documentation

Health and Medical

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

 
 
edited.jpg
 

Currency and Documentation

Currency

Currency used will depend on the destination country of your trip.  An email will be sent about 5-6 weeks before your trip with basic information about what currency is used in the country where your trip will be taking place.  

  • Recommendations will be given about how much money to bring and in what denominations.  It is always better to bring newer, non-ripped bills when traveling abroad. Keep in mind that you may need to request new bills and specific denominations from your bank several weeks ahead of time, so they can have them on hand.  

  • It is also possible to travel with a credit/debit card which can be used internationally as long as you make the provider aware ahead of time where you will be traveling and for how long.  You may be able to use an ATM to get local currency, but you will be responsible for any fees associated with that transaction, so it is wise to call and ask ahead of time. It is wise to have some cash on hand because a credit card is not accepted everywhere.

  • Traveler’s checks may not be able to be cashed and are therefore not generally recommended.

Important Documents:

Passport

All short-term volunteers need to bring their passport and 2 copies of the ID page of their passport with them.  There may be instances where you are asked for a copy of your passport or your passport number. Also check to make sure your expiration date is at least 6 months after your departure date. TO EXIT the USA and ENTER another country YOU WILL NEED A PASSPORT.  For some countries you may also need a visa. The Short-Term Team Coordinator will let you know if you will need a visa and how to obtain one.

Visa (if required)

Some countries where Ardeo sends Short-Term Teams require a visa.  If a visa is needed for your trip, the Short-Term Team Coordinator will let you know and send you detailed instructions on how to obtain the needed visa.

Background Check

If you are 16 years old or older, you are required to complete a background check within the past 12 months through Ardeo’s process before participating in an Ardeo trip. This includes a national criminal and sex offender registry search.

After registration a link will be sent to you with instructions about how to complete this process.   The results from the background check must be in our possession before we will purchase airfare for you.  That means we will need to have proof of your background check at least 100 days before the date of your travel since we purchase airfare around 90 days before the trip.  

The cost of your background check is included in your trip cost.

Personal Health Info

You are required to fill out an online form with some emergency and basic health information, so that we know of any allergies or important medical conditions.  The link to this form is included in your registration confirmation email.

Yellow Card (if required)

Some countries require a Yellow Fever Vaccine to enter.  When a Yellow Fever Vaccine is required, you will receive a Yellow Card that you should carry with your passport which will have proof of having received the vaccine.  The requirements for whether the Yellow Fever Vaccine is essential or not will be in the vaccination email sent after you register for the trip. You can also refer to the CDC website or reach out to Ardeo’s staff nurse: Jill Tibbs, jtibbs@ardeo.org.

Handbook Contents:

Introduction

Facilities and amenities

Airports and flights

Basic information

Photography on the field

Food and Water Information

Currency and Documentation

Health and Medical

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

 
 
edited.jpg
 

Photography on the field

It is important to be culturally appropriate and sensitive when taking photos.  Things to avoid would include but are not limited to: taking pictures of military people or facilities, flashing your camera or expensive smart phone when on public transportation (places where it could be a target to be stolen), or taking pictures inside someone’s home/hospitals/schools without permission to do so.  Always ask Ardeo staff if you are unsure if it is appropriate/acceptable to take a photo in a particular situation.

Remember pictures can be incredibly useful when you return home and want to share your stories and experiences, so they are important, but a photo is never more important than the respect of those you are there to serve.  If someone makes an impact on you and you took a photo, write some notes about the story including the person’s name in your journal, so you can share it with others later.

Handbook Contents:

Introduction

Facilities and amenities

Airports and flights

Basic information

Photography on the field

Food and Water Information

Currency and Documentation

Health and Medical

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

 
 
 

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

Luggage

Your flights will be purchased by Ardeo Global about 3 months (90 days) before your trip start date.  Once they are purchased the itinerary will be shared with you. The cost will include one checked bag.  For size & weight restrictions please check with the airline once tickets have been purchased. General guidelines for checked bags are a max weight of 50 pounds and overall dimensions totaling 62 linear inches or less, but since airline restrictions do change, be sure to verify before packing your bag and heading to the airport for your flight.  Most airlines allow a carry-on item and a personal item. Check with the airline for specific size & weight allowances as well as number of items & restrictions for carry-on baggage.

Packing List

About a month before your trip starts you will receive an email with a suggested packing list specific to the destination of your trip.  Follow recommendations and suggestions in that email. If you have questions regarding the packing list or need to ask about something before receiving that email, reach out to the Short-Term Team Coordinator, stmissions@ardeo.org.

Dress Code

As stated in code of conduct: Short-Term Team members should not wear clothing that is tight, revealing, or culturally inappropriate while representing Ardeo.  Follow the clothing guidelines/suggestions that will be sent in an email about a month before your trip.

Handbook Contents:

Introduction

Facilities and amenities

Airports and flights

Basic information

Photography on the field

Food and Water Information

Currency and Documentation

Health and Medical

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

 
 
edited.jpg
 

Airports and Flights

Tips for the Flights

  • Always be sure you give yourself extra time to arrive at your departing US/Canadian airport, check your bag, connect with your team, get through security, etc.  Typically, you should plan to arrive at your departing US/Canadian airport about 2-3 hours before your scheduled flight. When you are at your destination the Ardeo Field Team will instruct you about what time they will have you arrive at the airport.  International airports in other countries have different rules, so let the Ardeo staff lead in this situation.

  • Always be polite and respectful of airport staff and flight staff.  Don’t joke or talk about guns, hijacking a plane, or any other topic which could get you fined and banned from flying.  Those things are federal offenses.

  • When maneuvering through the airport, you should always stay with your group to ensure no one gets left behind.  Tell a leader if you are leaving the group for any reason.

  • Dress comfortably, wearing minimal jewelry and easy to remove shoes for your travel.  This will make the security scanning process smoother/easier.

  • Be respectful to those around you at all times during your trip.  (Bring headphones if you want to listen to music, watch movies, etc. and be aware of the volume you are using.)

  • Be sure to stay hydrated (planes are dry).

  • Have the things you want access to for your time on the flight in your bag that can fit under your seat. (Ex: book, journal, cell phone, headphones, etc.)

  • Always be sure to grab items that are yours from the seatback pocket and check your area before leaving the plane.

Customs, Immigration, & Inspection

  • When traveling internationally you will have to go through some additional stations (not just security which is true even of domestic flights).  This will often include: immigration (they will check your passport and what country you are from), customs/declaration (where you state what you are bringing into the country you are traveling to other than normal personal items & how much you spent outside the US, usually this should be $0-800 as that is the typical duty-free exemption allowance), often times the last station will be inspection (this will generally entail having your suitcases mechanically or visually scanned/searched).

  • Have your documents (passport, visa, customs forms, etc.) out and ready to show the authorities and remain calm.  Even if you are unsure of the situation, staying calm and asking for help will be the best thing you can do.

  • There is often paperwork given to you on the plane when you are entering another country (it is usually a one-page, double sided form).  This form will usually be checked at customs. It will ask questions about your personal information, where you will be staying, what you are bringing, how long you will be in the country, etc.  

  • The final email you receive about a week before departing for your trip will have the address of where you will be staying.  This is what you will need for the customs form, so please be sure you save that address for the form.

  • Always choose the “Tourism” option for the reason for your visit.

Handbook Contents:

Introduction

Facilities and amenities

Airports and flights

Basic information

Photography on the field

Food and Water Information

Currency and Documentation

Health and Medical

Luggage, Packing, and Dress Code

 
 
edited.jpg
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