safety benchmarks

ILP references six main benchmarks to ensure the safety of our volunteers:

  1. ILP Code of Conduct and Safety Rules: All ILP volunteers agree to abide by the ILP Code of Conduct, and Safety Rules written in Part F of the application booklet. Our volunteers' good judgement in abiding by these rules is their first line of defense.
  2. Head Teachers and advisors: ILP Head Teachers are peer-age leaders who have previously taught at least one semester with ILP, who stood out as exemplary teachers, and who demonstrated good social skills and team skills. They act as "coaches" to the teams of teachers, helping with on-site teacher training, lesson plans, program finances, excursions, and group morale. Advisors are more mature volunteer leaders, often with extensive life and international experience who provide additional guidance and support in a few select ILP program locations.
  3. Native Coordinators (Russia/Ukraine): Native Coordinators are a generation older than the volunteers, and act as the local Mom or Dad of the volunteers in each city. They are native to the country and city. They impose curfews as needed, restrict both local and long distance travel, advise about local political circumstances, and advise regarding any local situation that may effect the safety of volunteers but has not come to the attention of the media or expatriate public. They also assist with host family situations, visa support, language and culture classes, and occasionally even homesickness. Foreign affairs offices (China): In China, the Foreign Affairs staff at each school fills all the previous-mentioned responsibilities of the Native Coordinator, plus assists with any needed creature-comforts associated with food and housing in the dorms.
  4. State Department/Embassy: Upon arrival, all volunteers are registered with the nearest American embassy or consulate, which informs them of our presence, and allows them to receive any political or travel advisories through the U.S. State Department warden system.
  5. ILP is not affiliated with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints but over 90% of our volunteers are members, and we maintain contact with missionaries and many church leaders in areas where our volunteers serve. If a mission president decides to remove their missionaries from Russia, Ukraine, or China (there are service missionaries in China) we remove our volunteers as well.
  6. BYU and other international programs: ILP exchanges information with international programs that have students in the same locations as we do. We inquire about political or travel advisories, as well as disease epidemics or outbreaks.

There is no place that ILP spends more energy then keeping our volunteers safe. This process begins by selecting applicants who display good judgement, and agree to abide by the Code of Conduct and Safety Rules. We are fortunate to have had each of our nearly 4000 volunteers return home safely, and intend to keep that record going!