Tips for U.S. Partners Visiting their International Partners
Representatives from a U.S. partner organization who travel to visit their international partner often return with a stronger commitment to the relationship, and a better understanding of their partner’s needs. Here are some tips for preparing to visit your international partner:
- Carefully plan the trip and activities in conjunction with your partner organization. Agree on the timing and length of the trip and the number of U.S. staff involved so the partner organization is not overwhelmed. Find out what kind of social events and other group gatherings your travel team can expect, so they can prepare in advance.
- Decide whether you will stay in homes or at a hotel. While staying in a Western-style hotel is likely to be more comfortable, staying in a home of staff from your international partner will yield invaluable benefits in building relationships and learning about your partner organization’s country and culture. If a home stay is not possible, ask for recommendations on lodging; your partner organization’s staff will be able to recommend convenient lodging.
- Discuss the conditions under which home visits will be made. Note that U.S. medical personnel are present to learn from, and consult with, their colleagues; they are not allowed to diagnose or prescribe in many international countries.
- Be prepared with necessary health precautions. These precautions will vary depending on the country in which your partner organization is located. Find out more about necessary vaccinations and prophylaxis at the U.S. State Department’s website or your local travel clinic.
- Inform the U.S. authorities. While in your partner organization’s country, visit the U.S. Embassy or Consulate and let them know you are in the country. You might wish to meet with the public or cultural affairs officers, who are often interested in stories about American visits and the resulting positive publicity they can generate.
- Document the visit. Take photos and share your experiences with your home community (as appropriate). Outlets such as your Facebook page, Twitter feed, newsletter, and website provide avenues to share your experience and engage others in your work and that of your partner organization.
If you have any questions, please contact our office at firstname.lastname@example.org.