Below are the answers to questions we have had from individuals, parents, teachers and students in the past. If you have a question that isn’t covered below or you want to find out more, then please get in touch.
Of course. You can raise money for a charity of your choosing or our very own chairty – The Venture Force Foundation. The Foundation is a separate orgranisation from Venture Force and supports the Eugemot Orphanage in Ghana, whose new compound we have built from scratch. For further details on what The Foundation does visit Venture Force Foundation. Any funds raised for charity should be separate to those you raise against the cost of your expedition.
We will email you an invoice for the cost of the expedition. Payment should then be made as per the agreed instalment payment schedule. For school expeditions this is a monthly amount. For our adult expeditions, the schedule will be agreed with you on sign-up. The easiest way to pay is to set up a standing order with your bank for the regular instalment amount. You can also make payment by manual bank transfer. Please make sure you use the correct payment reference, as advised in your expedition welcome email. Regular statements will be issued to keep you abreast of the payments you have made.
At Venture Force we pride ourselves in the quality of our community/conservation projects. Recognising the need to work with local communities and wildlife organisations, experts in their fields and needs, we ensure that projects are worthwhile, necessary and sustainable.
Long before any expedition happens, our team of in-country agents liaise with community elders and local charities to identify projects that best fit their requirements and our strict criteria. We support local economies by employing local tradesmen, cook teams and activity providers and make sure that fair wages are paid. The additional benefit of engaging local people and companies, is that it provides a much more realistic experience and adds to the developmental aspect of the expedition.
Please make sure you have copied the username and password exactly as it was sent to you in your welcome email. It’s case sensitive and won’t work if you have an additional space at either the beginning or the end. If you are still having trouble, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call on 01664 490453 and we’ll help you sort it out.
At Venture Force we are committed to reducing the environmental impact of our business. Our core team all work from home to negate the need for office premises or a commute to work. We conduct as many of our meetings as we can by telephone or video conferencing. Sustainability informs our purchasing choices, such as our expedition t-shirts which are organic and ethically produced.To find out more check out our sustainability page.
Venture Force is fully ATOL bonded which provides financial protection and peace of mind if (in the unlikely event) we cease operations. In addition to this, we purchase comprehensive travel insurance for all participants which covers cancellation (see our COVID info page for exceptions), emergency rescue, medical costs and repatriation where necessary.
Because we aren’t medical professionals, we can’t specify what vaccinations you need for your expedition. We will however, provide you with all the details of regions you’ll be visiting and the activities you’ll be taking part in so that your local travel clinic or pharmacist can give you professional advice on what is required.
At Venture Force we are inclusive and committed to providing the opportunity to all for achievement. We will work to create solutions enabling participation wherever possible. We’ll prepare a tailored expedition medical plan that will allow maximum participation. Please note that any pre-existing medical conditions should be declared to the expedition insurance company.
It’s good to get to know your team before you travel. We arrange team meetings in person or virtually prior to the expedition, depending on the geographical location of team members. In the past we have asked teams if they’d like us to set up WhatsApp groups that make the whole process easier, but we can only do this if all of the team members would like the same.
You can join as an individual, team or anything in between! We have run expeditions for work groups, old friends, new friends, organisations and adventurous minded individuals – all of which bring their own unique advantages. As long as we reach the minimum number of team members we can progress, so do get in touch – it will be an adventure you will never forget.
We purchase comprehensive travel and repatriation insurance for the duration of the expedition for all overseas participants, which covers curtailment, emergency rescue, medical costs and repatriation. Your travel insurance document will be available on your expedition portal page.
If you wish to have pre-expedition cancellation insurance then you will need to purchase this yourself. We do however offer our COVID guarantee for our individual adult team members, see our Covid 19 Information page.
Some of our expeditions, by nature of the activity, are more arduous than others. We have detailed the difficulty levels on each expedition page and provide comprehensive training plans in the build-up. We do ask that you carefully read through the notes for the trip that you have selected and be realistic about your ability to complete the itinerary described. Everyone adds their own value to the team and a huge part of the success of our expeditions is developing that teamwork, so that everyone can achieve their goals. If you have the right attitude, an open mind, and a desire to participate fully in the trip – you can do it!
All our expedition have some downtime built in to the itinerary to allow team members to relax and reflect on the journey so far. You’ll need to consult with your expedition leaders who can offer you advice on safety issues, cultural issues, time constraints etc. We want you to have the best time possible and we are aware that sometimes you just need some time on your own.
The short answer is no. We really want all participants to fully immerse themselves in the expedition experience, engage with the tasks at hand and gain maximum developmental benefit. Hence, we actively discourage routine communication whilst on expedition and recommend that mobile phones are left at home where possible. You will however, receive several texts to let you know how the team are doing and, when possible, we’ll post photo updates via social media.
All our teams are equipped with an extensive communications package including satellite phones, allowing them to make contact with our 24hr UK based operations room if required. You will be provided with the operations room telephone number as this is the hub for communication between teams and the UK. Rest assured that important information will be passed when required.
You can fundraise as a team or as an individual, it’s up to you. Either way it’s completely do-able and you should view it as part of the experience. There are so many different ways to fundraise! You could take part in a sponsored event, get a part time job, pack bags at a supermarket, run a bake sale or babysit, the list is endless. To help you out we’ve created a fundraising brochure which will be available on your expedition portal page.
We have an excellent safety and support system which is operational 24 hours a day during all our expeditions, meaning that we are prepared to deal with anything. Our two experienced expedition leaders and two teachers are first aid trained and backed by the support of a remote medical service, meaning leaders can speak immediately to a doctor for the best medical advice. All our teams carry comprehensive medical kits, including some prescription medication, to ensure doctors can prescribe immediately, where necessary.
Experience leads us to believe that two members of school staff, alongside our leaders, provides the best pastoral care option for the team. If you are unable to or would prefer not to, this isn’t a problem. Just let us know and we can discuss other options.
Send us an email to email@example.com or give us a call on 01664 490453 and we’ll explain the process. Initially we’d like some rough details on your preferred destination, group size, duration and what your aims are. From here we’ll develop an itinerary that suits your needs and once you’re happy, deliver launch presentations in school to both students and parents.
From the point where you make initial contact with us until the expedition is safely back in the UK, you’ll have a dedicated expedition manager. They will work closely with you to develop an expedition that perfectly suits your needs. We realise that teaching is a demanding profession and our aim is to minimise your organisational burden. We’ll ask you to help organise spaces for meetings and occasionally to provide necessary information but other than that our team will deal with all the expedition planning and administration.
This doesn’t mean you’ll be out of the loop though. We’ll stay in regular contact with you so that you know how things are progressing. In addition to this, if you have questions at any time, you can contact your expedition manager or our admin team for an answer.
A developmental expedition is one where students are given a unique opportunity to gain and improve on their soft skills. Taking part in an expedition fast-tracks this learning process as students are expected to be responsible for managing many aspects of the expedition themselves. Our expedition leaders will begin coaching the team when they meet at the airport, allowing the team to become increasingly independent as the expedition progresses. Where possible the team will have complete responsibility for itinerary and budget management, travel, food, accommodation and liaison with third-party providers. They will be supported all the way by our leaders, who will only intervene when necessary.
Through activity and reflection, this type of expedition develops individual confidence, character and resilience as well as improving teamworking and leadership skills. In addition to this it broadens awareness of other cultures and ways of life. The experiences and lessons learnt during the expedition can add significant value to a students’ applications, whether they go on to further study or into employment. We’ve received so much feedback from parents telling us about the positive changes they’ve seen in their children after returning from one of our expeditions.