FAQs

Everything you need to know

Here are some answers to some common question we have received. Still looking for an answer? Drop us a line and we’ll be sure to get an answer for you.

About EQWIP

What is EQWIP?

EQWIP is a global consortium lead by Canada World Youth (CWY) and Youth Challenge International (YCI) which brings together 70+ years of youth development experience with a focus on reciprocal global exchanges and youth innovation.

EQWIP HUBs leverages the proven training methodologies of the Education Development Centre (EDC), the broad-based networks and reach of UN-Habitat and the online engagement and community building expertise of Taking IT Global (TIG).

Who is Canada World Youth?

Canada World Youth offers world-renowned international volunteer programs to youth from Canada and abroad who, through their participation in community-driven development projects, acquire the leadership skills that allow them to become agents of change. Canada World Youth has become cutting edge leader of reciprocal exchange programs that foster transformative experiential learning for young people. Since 1971 over 35,000 young people have participated on a Canada World Youth experience, including growing numbers of indigenous youth.

Who is Youth Challenge International?

YCI believes that youth innovation drives positive change and develops creative, market-ready solutions that catapult youth around the world to succeed and prosper. For 25 years, YCI has been leading powerful youth development initiatives that connect, impact and inspire young people around the world to overcome the challenges they face including a range of global youth volunteer experiences which help connect youth to innovation and sustainable livelihoods.

How did you choose the partners that you work with?

We engaged in a partnership development process to find reputable and influential partners who have shared goals, complementary visions, a passion for working with youth at a global scale.

Volunteering at EQWIP HUBs

How long does the application and selection process take?

The selection phase is about 2 weeks. This is followed by the pre-departure preparation phase which is approximately 4-6 weeks, and includes pre-departure orientation, fundraising, and logistical elements such as visas, vaccinations etc.

What is the selection process?

Our goal is to make the best match between an applicant’s skills and our project needs.

Can I select my placement country?

During your interview, you will be asked to indicate your three country preferences. Please note that we will strive to place you in one of your countries of preference, though since our selection process involves placing qualified volunteers in the country with the highest need for their skills, and considering specific language requirements, we cannot guarantee it.

What type of orientation/training will I receive?

There is a pre-departure orientation, as well as a comprehensive in-country orientation. EQWIP HUBs staff provides resources, tools, and knowledge modules for you to prepare yourself for your overseas placement. Your pre-departure training involves online learning modules followed by a webinar with the team. Your in-country orientation is a 4-day orientation with country staff and team.

Can my family/significant other accompany me on my placement?

The EQWIP HUBs project does not provide placement support for dependents or families. Please note, EQWIP HUBs is not responsible for anyone that is not a placed volunteer in the project.

Will I have an opportunity to speak to the country office before departure?

As part of your pre-departure orientation, you will have a one-on-one with the Country Manager via Skype. This will be an opportunity to ask any country specific details prior to departure.

When will I know the details of my placement?

Details of your placement are provided at the time of a contract offer.

Who is responsible for my airfare to and from my placement?

EQWIP HUBs is responsible for purchasing a single return ticket to and from your placement destination.

Am I able to change flights and departures?

EQWIP HUBs will confirm the dates of your placement with you. Unless required by EQWIP HUBs, any changes to your travel arrangements, including post-project travel, are at your own cost and are to be arranged directly by you through the travel agent.

Do I need a visa? What is the process for applying for visas?

It is the sole prerogative of every country to determine entry and exit requirements and each country that EQWIP HUBs works in has specific visa entry requirements. EQWIP HUBs staff in Ottawa will provide you with the details and assist you with the visa process.

Are visa fees reimbursed?

For all visa costs, you will initially pay out of pocket and be reimbursed by EQWIP HUBs after you have completed your full fundraising.

Can I travel without required vaccinations?

No. It is important for your health and safety, and in some cases the entry requirements of your placement country to obtain all required vaccinations.

Who is responsible for vaccination costs?

Participants are responsible for vaccinations and medical expenses.

What does my monthly allowance cover?

The monthly allowance covers both a housing allowance and living allowance. The housing portion covers your housing expenses at a local standard of living. The living allows is for expenses such as food, and local transportation. Any additional expense is the volunteer’s responsibility.

What are other common costs for participation in the program?

Other common costs include vaccinations, renewal of passport, personal expenses, and travel insurance.

If I do not have provincial health coverage, can I still apply?

Applicants must have provincial health coverage to be eligible for placement.

What coverage does AIG insurance provide?

AIG coverage includes emergency medical coverage.

What happens if I am unable to meet the full contribution fees and deadlines?

Most of our volunteers successfully completed their fundraising targets well in time for their scheduled departures with the support of the excellent platform and fundraising ideas. If, however, you are unable to meet the agreed deadlines and contribution fees, you will be unable to depart for your placement as scheduled, and we reserve the right to backfill your placement.

Why do I have to pay the $350 deposit?

The deposit is to secure your placement with EQWIP HUBs. It solidifies your commitment so that we may start the preparation process with you and begin to undertake the necessary administrative work, such as airfare, insurance, visa support etc., to ensure you are deployed on schedule. The $350 is part of your total contribution amount.

Are the contribution fees and deposit refundable?

No, all donations made to the EQWIP HUBs project are non-refundable. Donations of $20 or over are automatically tax receipted through the online Raisin page (the fundraising platform for EQWIP HUBs).  Also note, donations are not transferrable from one participant to another.

When is the contribution fee due? Am I able to raise funds after my departure?

The contribution fees are due prior to departure based on the due date provided by EQWIP HUBs. For late applicants, the fundraising deadline will be shorter to meet departure dates. The EQWIP HUBs team will discuss the deadline as well as the support tools available for you at the time of your contract offer.

Is fundraising mandatory?

A contribution fee for participation in the EQWIP HUBs project is mandatory. Fundraising and crowd sourcing are resources utilized by volunteers through the Raisin fundraising platform.  Alternatively, you may choose to make a personal contribution or combine fundraising with a personal contribution.

How does Raisin work?

Raisin is a secure online fundraising platform that allows volunteers to campaign and receive donations for their placement. It will make fundraising easier for you and will allow you to share your experience with as many people as possible and create your own custom page. All donations to the project must be submitted via the Raisin page.

How do I submit cash/cheque donations to the Raisin site? How are they tax receipted?

Cash or cheque donations can be submitted to the Raisin site as Offline Pledges. You must pay off the donation via a credit card, and the tax receipt information may be manually submitted and sent to the donor.

What donations are eligible for tax receipts?

All donations over $20 are eligible for a tax receipt, with the exception of donations made by parents of the participant. Under CRA regulations, EQWIP HUBs cannot issue an official donation receipt if a donor is contributing towards a program in which their child is participating.

What is the Youth Innovation Fund?

The Youth Innovation Fund is seed capital for the local youth participants who complete the EQWIP HUBs Entrepreneurship Training program in each country. The local youth will be eligible to apply for the Youth Innovation Fund and receive financial grants to support their business plans.

Are in-kind donations eligible towards the contribution fee?

No, only monetary contributions are accepted.

Who will pick me up at the airport upon arrival?

Airport arrival logistics will be coordinated by the Country Office, who will either send a staff member to meet you, or arrange for trusted transportation. All logistical information will be shared with you during the pre-departure period.

Am I eligible for vacation time?

Yes, all volunteers are eligible for 1 vacation day per month while in placement.

What type of housing options are available? How it is selected?

Housing options will be identified by the Country Office and presented to you during the in-country orientation. All accommodations follow our health and safety guidelines to ensure a standard for all volunteers, which includes hygiene, safety, as well as proximity to work. Options may be shared housing or independent living depending on the length of your placement and the local housing inventory at the time of your arrival.

What are my work hours? Can I work a second job or gain income on the side?

You can expect to work between 40 to 48 hours per week, with business hours typical of your host country. You are not eligible to work a second job or have additional income as your status in country is directly tied to your placement. We expect your full commitment to the EQWIP HUBs project during the course of your placement.

How will I be paid my monthly allowance?

Depending on the country, you will either be paid directly by the Country Office, or be receiving your allowance via direct deposit from the Ottawa office.

What happens in an emergency? What safety and security protocols are in place?

We take the responsibility of our volunteers very seriously. Each country has very strict safety and security protocols to follow in the event of any type of emergency. The Country Office will share these details with you upon your arrival.

What happens if I have to leave the project before completing my placement?

It is our expectation that you will fulfill your commitment to the project based on your contract. In situations outside of our control, you may be required to pay penalties including costs associated with changes in airfare, and repayment of any stipends accrued beyond your departure date. However, in emergency situations, these fees may be waived. Should this situation arise, the Country Manager will provide further guidance.

What kind of support can I expect from EQWIP HUBs?

EQWIP HUBs has staff in each country we operate in, and the team is there to support you during your placement. During your pre-departure orientation, your team and support systems will be identified. Once you are in the country, and working within the EQWIP HUBs team, it will be your responsibility to communicate your needs effectively to your Country Manager so that they may do their best to address them.

What is the process for post-placement travel?

Volunteers may elect to do post-placement travel, however, any costs associated with changing return flights will be the volunteer’s responsibility. Additionally, AIG Insurance benefits expire on the last day of the placement and will not be extended for personal travel. Canada World Youth and Youth Challenge International will not be responsible for the volunteer beyond the placement end date.  It is, therefore, recommended that volunteers obtain alternate insurance coverage beyond the placement date at their own expense when planning post-placement travel.

What are the project requirements upon my return from my placement?

Once you have returned, EQWIP HUBs Ottawa will be in contact for a de-brief session, following which, our partner Alberta Council for Global Cooperation (ACGC), will provide you with direct support in your public engagement efforts in Canada, as per the terms of your placement.

What opportunities can EQWIP HUBs provide after my return?

You will have the opportunity to be involved in a community of international development, including ACGC and their events and networks.

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