Welcome 2017 CHI Summer Abroad Participants

Accept your admission

In order to accept your admission to the program, you will need to read the below terms and conditions and mark the box below, no later than 11:59 PM (PST), Friday, February 17, 2017. If you have not completed this step by midnight on February 17, 2017, CHI will assume that you are no longer interested in participating and will withdraw you from the program. If you have paid a $250 deposit, it will remain on your account and is non-refundable.

Once you accept your admission, you will be given detailed information about fundraising support, and access to "CHI Summer Abroad Participant" webpages. There you will find detailed information about obtaining visas, vaccination requirements/recommendations, health and well-being in Kenya, itinerary, and lots more!

Children’s Humanitarian International (CHI) reserves the right to make changes to its programs, policies, and procedures. CHI will strive to notify participants in a timely manner of any significant changes that may affect their participation in the 2017 CHI Summer Abroad program.


The CHI Summer Abroad program is open to all Sonoma County high school students with an interest in studying abroad who have completed at least one year of high school by the start of the program and have at least a 2.0 GPA. You are also required to obtain all necessary travel documentation (i.e. passport, visa, vaccination record, etc).

Note: Seniors who will be graduating by the start of the program ARE ELIGIBLE.

CHI reserves the right to void the admission of any student who is found not to meet the above requirements after being admitted.


If we have more eligible applicants than there is room in the program, a waitlist of all eligible applicants will be created in the order in which applications are received. Waitlist order is under CHI’s sole discretion. If placed on a waitlist, you will be notified via email and must reply as to whether you wish to:

  • Remain on the waitlist – no further action required (if, ultimately, there is no room in the program for you, your $250 deposit will be refunded).
  • Withdraw from the waitlist – in which case your $250 deposit will be refunded.

If an opening occurs in the program, the first student on the waitlist will be notified by email. If you receive an offer for a place in the program, you will have 24 hours to accept it. If you do not respond within 24 hours, you will be placed at the bottom of the waitlist and the next applicant on the list will be offered the spot instead. CHI reserves sole discretion to manage program waitlists.

Program Preparation

You are required to attend the program orientation and may be asked to attend other preparatory workshops conducted by CHI Summer Abroad staff. If you are unable to attend for any reason, it is your responsibility to notify program staff to ensure that you receive the information and materials covered during the orientation and workshops.

A valid passport is required to travel abroad. If you don’t have a passport, you can pick up an application form at a U.S. Post Office. Passport applications normally take at least six weeks to be processed, so apply early. If you already have a passport, be sure its expiration date falls at least six months beyond the end of the program. If it does not, renew the passport as soon as possible. For more information about the issuance of passports, visit http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/passports.html.

An entry visa is also required. Visa requirements can be obtained from the Kenyan embassy in Washington, D.C., or its website. Better, apply for your visa online at https://immigration.ecitizen.go.ke/index.php?id=5.

It is your responsibility to prepare all necessary travel documents (i.e., passport, visa, vaccination record, etc.). CHI is not responsible for ensuring that you have the appropriate visa or other documentation. However, CHI Summer Abroad staff will provide further information regarding Kenya entry visas in your welcome packet.


Students are required to use the program housing arranged by CHI. Students may not arrange for their own housing or choose independent housing.

For all shared accommodations, program participants will be assigned rooms randomly on a same-sex basis. Due to the complexity of program logistics, we are unable to accommodate roommate requests. However, if there is a dispute between roommates or other extenuating circumstances, CHI Summer Abroad staff will do everything possible to address and resolve the issue.

Students must follow all housing rules and regulations. Failure to do so may result in dismissal from the program.


For the 2017 CHI Summer Abroad Program, the fee for non-scholarship recipients is $5,400. The following items are included in the program fee:

  • Roundtrip airfare – to and from San Francisco International Airport and Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi
  • Student housing
  • Three meals a day
  • On-site lectures and project participation
  • Excursions and other field trips
  • Medical and other insurance
  • 24/7 program support

Please note that the following items are excluded from the program fee:

  • Personal expenses (souvenirs, toiletries, etc.)
  • Additional meals outside of the provided meals
  • Passport and visa fees

For more information about included expenses, please contact program staff.


Once you are registered in the CHI Summer Abroad Program, you will be responsible for making timely payments. Your $250 deposit will be applied to the total cost. The payment schedule is as follows:

  • $250 non-refundable deposit upon completion of the application
  • First payment due by 5 p.m., Tuesday, February 28, 2017
  • Second payment due by 5 p.m., Friday, March 31, 2017
  • Third payment due by 5 p.m., Friday, April 28, 2017
  • Last payment: balance due by 5 p.m., Wednesday, May 31, 2017

All payments must be received by the due date. If for some reason you need an extension, please inform us before the due date to make an arrangement. Once you are accepted in the program, you will be given access to the CH Summer Abroad participant webpage where you will find useful information, view important documents, and access to CHI's fundraising/program fee payment site. Please do not make a payment through CHI’s donation page.

Dismissal from Program

Failure to uphold requirements set by the CHI Summer Abroad Student Agreement and by program staff may result in immediate dismissal from the program. In the event that a participant is dismissed, he/she will be responsible for all program-related expenses as well as travel home. More information will be provided at the CHI Summer Abroad orientation meeting.

Withdrawal, Cancellation & Refund

To withdraw from the CHI Summer Abroad Program, you must submit a Request to Withdraw Form. Writing an email or talking to a CHI staff member is NOT considered an official request. Please be sure to indicate the reason you are withdrawing and review the refund policy carefully for details on cancellation/withdrawal deadlines.

The refund policy is as follows:

The $250 deposit is nonrefundable, except under the following circumstances:

  • You are not selected by the CHI Selection Committee because you do not meet the selection criteria (no refund will be issued if you did not complete the application by failing to submit all required documents and/or did not attend any required meeting).
  • The program is cancelled by CHI.
  • You are placed on the waitlist and notify CHI of your intention to withdraw your application from the waitlist process.
  • You are placed on the waitlist and an opening in the program does not occur.

Program Fee 

Once you have confirmed a spot in the program, you will be assessed a program fee minus any scholarships you received. If you cancel after you have accepted the offer, you will owe any remaining balance.

Refund Appeals

We understand that situations may occur that prevent you from attending or completing the CHI Summer Abroad program. If you need to drop or withdraw from your program after you have accepted the offer of admission, there are procedures in place for requesting an appeal to the refund policy.

Please note that summer 2017 refund appeals will not be accepted after August 31, 2017.

All refund appeals require a signed letter of explanation, supporting documentation and a completed Request to Withdraw Form. You should state, as concisely and clearly as possible, the reason for this appeal. The appeal letter is limited to one page, and it must be written and signed by the student’s parents if the student is under 18. The letter should also include your current email and postal address so that we can notify you of the decision on the appeal. All appeals will be carefully reviewed and considered by the CHI Board of Directors.

We honor the confidentiality of all supporting documentation.

Please note that the appeal decision is final. Therefore, it is essential to disclose all information, reasons for appeal, and all supporting documentation regarding your case in the initial appeal letter. Subsequent appeal letters providing new information, different reasons for appeal, or new supporting documentation are not eligible for review.

Required documentation for the most common appeals:


For a medical problem, we require verification of the severity of the condition (i.e., how the condition affects your ability to travel abroad, or if already in country when you withdrew, how the condition affected your ability to remain in country), not a detailed description of the condition itself. We require a letter, typed on official letterhead, from the physician or other personal health care provider. The letter must be signed and delivered/mailed in a sealed envelope. Emails or unsigned letters on plain stationery are not acceptable.

Death in the Family

We require a copy of death certificate (or verification of death from the hospital or attending physician), and the deceased's relation to the student.

You can mail to your appeal with all supporting documents to:

Children’s Humanitarian International
RE: CHI Summer Abroad Refund Appeal
P.O. Box 1735
Sebastopol, CA 95473-1735

Program Cancellation

CHI reserves the right to cancel the CHI Summer Abroad program for any reason. In the unlikely event that the program is canceled, you will be notified, and a full refund of the program fee, including the $250 deposit, will be issued.

CHI is not responsible for any personal expenses incurred.

Health Insurance

When participating in CHI Summer Abroad all students will be covered 24 hours a day, for a wide variety of accidents and illnesses. This coverage is provided at no additional cost to participants. However, you must register for the insurance in order to be covered. You will receive registration instructions in your confirmation packet. This coverage includes:

  • Emergency Medical Evacuation
  • Security Extraction
  • Accident/Sickness/Medical
  • Other Travel Assistance Services

To view the complete Travel Benefits Summary please contact CHI for a copy.


Health and Wellness

Staying healthy while abroad enables you to make the most of your time there. CHI strongly encourages all students to speak with their primary care physician and mental health care providers about traveling to determine what you need to assure your physical and mental wellbeing while abroad.


Some countries may require certain vaccination or health clearances for visa or entry purposes. Participation in the program is contingent upon your obtaining the required visa. Failure to obtain a visa based on a failure to obtain necessary vaccinations is not a basis for a refund of program-related fees. The Center for Disease Control details vaccination requirements and other traveler's health information.

Further Information

Program and country information may not be immediately posted online. It is important that you actively research and ask appropriate questions to get the answers that you need. Essential information can be obtained from the following sources:

  • Welcome orientation
  • Welcome packet
  • Pre-departure packet
  • CHI Summer Abroad staff
  • Program Director
  • Books on your destination country
  • U.S. Department of State, Center for Disease Control, and Kenyan Embassy websites
  • Much additional information on Kenya can be found in the CIA World Factbook