Have you been considering volunteering abroad, or joining a local mission or volunteer project? Whether it’s your first time or you’re an experienced vacation volunteer, Mission Discovery has ongoing and short term mission trips around the United States and in some of the world’s neediest countries. Researching your options and planning the details will make your experience really worthwhile.

You should probably start by deciding if an international or domestic mission trip is best for you. For an international mission trip, you’ll need a valid passport, up to date immunizations, and the right health insurance to cover your time abroad.

You’ll also want to match your skills and interests with the type of mission trip you choose. You may want to teach English, work in a health clinic, such as the one Mission Discovery supports in Haiti, or join a group that focuses on a single community and its needs. Mission Discovery’s international projects cover all of these options. Once abroad, you will be able to travel either before or after your time as a volunteer. Is the country you want to visit a safe one? Assessing risky situations is important.

Disaster response is a great way to serve domestically or even in your own community. You might be asked to provide food and shelter, or help re-build after a flood, fire or hurricane. The advantage of domestic missionary work is that you don’t need to travel far to get involved. You might also connect with a group that plans to provide long-term support to a community or town impacted by disaster. Mission Discovery has inner-city trips in Nashville, TN and Seattle, WA as well as rural options in several other US states.

Whether it’s international or domestic, you are a college student or retiree; your mission trip will be life changing. You might help one needy community, or thousands of disaster victims. Whatever you decide, plan carefully and choose a project that matches your skills and budget.