Our knowledge-base will answer many of your frequently asked questions.
The children that come on the program are selected based on recommendations by orphanage directors and facilitators who work with orphanage staff. In addition, our OHHC team travels to Ukraine and Latvia twice a year to build and strengthen our in-country relationships, as well as to personally meet with each child. On occasion a particular child may be recommended to the program without a personal interview, but that is the exception. The children chosen for the program are believed to have the ability to benefit from the vacation experience and to successfully adapt to family life in the United States. A brief description of the child's personal characteristics and medical history is requested from the orphanage staff, yet as a host program, the information is often limited.
The children travel to America accompanied by an escort from the orphanage. Host families meet the kids at the airport and take them home to live as part of their family for three to four weeks. While the children are in the U.S., they interact with American kids and participate in cultural and enrichment activities. Host families provide the opportunity to experience family life to children who would otherwise never get that chance. All of the children must return to their home countries with their escorts at the end of the visit program.
For more information contact the Volunteer Coordinator assigned to your state or region from the Out Team page.
In addition to vacation activities and participating in day-to-day family life, OHHC hosts several activities designed to bring children and families together. These events also give the escort an opportunity to check in with the children, and for host parents to ask questions and share their experiences.