Frequently asked questions.
Who is BWO?
Believers World Outreach or BWO is a 501(C) 3 non-profit missions sending organization. BWO facilitates short-term mission trips for individuals, churches, and other ministry groups desiring to step beyond their own comfort zones and share the love of Christ to the lost and the hurting of this world.
How long has BWO been around?
BWO was founded in 2003 and has since taken thousands of missionaries of all ages, backgrounds, and denominations around the world to share the Gospel.
What countries does BWO visit?
BWO currently ministers in Central America, Africa, and the Unites States. We are always open to visiting other countries if it seems like a fit. If you are a church/ministry group and you have a heart for a certain county but don’t want to facilitate the trip, contact us. We may be able to serve you.
What happens after I submit my application?
You will receive a welcome email with more information as well as an email containing your customized Mission Plan which will clearly lay out all your requirements (payments & paperwork), due dates, and helpful suggestions along the way. This mission plan will guide you along the way as you prepare for your trip.
How do I get accepted to the mission team?
Acceptance to the mission team is based on receiving a clear* background check, a positive leader recommendation, as well as your overall physical health. After you receive the two emails mentioned above in Question 04, you will receive more detailed information on how to complete each of these.
How do I obtain a U.S. Passport?
For information on applying for or renewing a U.S. Passport, click here.
My passport expires soon, should I renew it?
For all international trips, passports must be valid for a minimum of six months from the last day of your intended stay in the country. If it will expire sooner, you will need to renew it. For information on renewing your passport, click here.
Are donations tax deductible?
Believers World Outreach is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization registered with the IRS. All contributions to BWO are tax-deductible and will be used for tax-exempt purposes. Financial allocation of donated funds is at the discretion of BWO’s Board of Directors of mission work. According to IRS policy, tax deductions for contributions may only be given if the donor does not specify how the funds are to be used (leave the “Memo” section of checks made out to BWO blank).
What about refunds?
Due to BWO’s status with the IRS as a 501(c) 3 non profit organization, money cannot be refunded under any circumstances. In the event that you cancel from your trip, any funds paid to BWO (that have not been used for airline, food, lodging, or transportation deposits) may be applied towards another trip within the next year, less a 20% administrative fee. You may also choose to donate excess funds to another missionary, to mission trip projects, or the general fund.
What is included in the price of a BWO mission trip?
Mission trips are all-inclusive from the departure city. This means your international airfare (unless otherwise noted), food, lodging, ground transportation, and ministry are covered in the price of your trip.
Are there any expenses not included in the trip price?
Yes, you are responsible for the cost of obtaining your passport, any visa fees or departure taxes (if applicable), personal items on the packing list, transportation to your departure city, and any free day activities you choose to partake in.
PREPARING FOR YOUR TRIP
How can I raise money for my mission trip?
The most successful way we have seen people raise money is through support letters. BWO recommends a one-page letter that includes why you feel called to go, what you will be doing on the trip, and how the potential donor can partner with you. Customizing your letter is essential to its effectiveness. There are also numerous other ways to raise funds such as garage sales, bake sales, and silent auctions.
How can I get to know other people that will be serving on my team?
BWO creates official Facebook groups for each mission trip so you can connect with other team members and stay up to date with the latest information about your trip. After your application is processed, you will receive instructions on how you can join your group.
What vaccines or medications will I need?
This will depend on the trip. Some countries require certain vaccines in order to enter the country, while others have no requirements at all. For information on vaccinations click here. BWO also recommends contacting your doctor who may refer you to a travel clinic for further specifics.
Do I need travelers insurance?
All missionaries participating in a BWO mission trip must have health insurance coverage. If you currently have health insurance and are traveling out of the country, you will need to check if you are covered overseas. If you do not have health insurance or you don’t have coverage overseas, you can easily purchase an inexpensive policy online. BWO’s recommendation is included in your welcome email once you sign up.
DURING YOUR TRIP
Where will I stay?
Missionaries typically stay in hotels, bed and breakfasts, or dormitory type housing. The accommodations are comfortable as there are many first time missionaries on BWO trips. Males and females will room with others of the same sex. Exceptions can be made for married couples and families prior to the trip if desired.
What will I eat?
Breakfast and dinner will be served at the lodging facility, a restaurant, or will be provided by ministry partners. BWO works closely with in-country contacts to provide quality meals that are both healthy and enjoyable. The primary lunch for ministry days will consist of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, fruit, chips or cookies, and bottled water.
How will we travel from place to place during the mission trip?
BWO will have chartered buses and/or vans that will be used exclusively for transporting the mission team.
Will I be able to contact home during the trip?
BWO realizes that communication can be necessary for both business and personal reasons. Pay phones will sometimes be available or missionaries may choose to bring a cell phone or laptop. While electronics are allowed, they are the sole responsibility of the individual missionary and Believers World Outreach is not liable for any losses. It is BWO’s hope that the team members lay aside any unnecessary distractions in order to focus on their relationship with the Lord and the ministry.
What if I have a medical need while in the mission country?
BWO will have a predetermined medical facility within the country, should any need arise. The location is chosen based on the staff’s medical expertise, language abilities, and overall quality of the facility. Believers World Outreach is not responsible for any expenses incurred. It is for this reason that you must have health insurance that will cover you in case of an emergency during your trip.
What happens if it becomes necessary for there to be an emergency evacuation from the country during the trip?
Prior to the departure date of the trip, BWO closely monitors all activities within the country. Should an emergency or crisis situation arise during the trip, BWO would take the appropriate action to ensure the protection of the team members. Based on the nature of the crisis and the duration of the remainder of the trip, missionaries will either be evacuated to a safe neighboring country, or sent home immediately. Whatever the case, communication will take place between the leadership within the mission country, BWO leaders, and family members to determine what the best cause of action should be.
PARENTS OF MINOR PARTICIPANTS
What actions does BWO take to ensure my child’s safety?
BWO takes precautionary measures in all areas to ensure the safest conditions possible for your child. Background checks will be performed on participants ages 18 and older. This includes leadership as well as missionaries on the team. It is also BWO’s policy that all missionaries are in approved groups at all times. This will ensure that your child is always in a safe group consisting of trip leadership and other team members. Pairing off or going anywhere without the permission of a BWO leader is prohibited. Each aspect of the trip is hand-picked with safety in mind including lodging, transportation, ministry locations, and even food.
Can my child go on a trip without me or another adult?
This will depend on the particular trip and the child’s exact age. Minor teens are allowed to travel alone under certain conditions but please refer to the individual mission trip pages for age requirements.
How will my child get to the departure city?
As mentioned above, the individual missionary is responsible for their transportation to their departure city. Your teen would fly alone (or be driven to) their departure city and BWO staff will be at the arrival airport to meet them. Once they land, they will be with the mission’s team for the duration of the trip.