How much does Radical Journey cost?
While the total cost per participant is approximately $14,500, Radical Journey asks each participant to raise $9,000 (2014-2015) toward team costs. As an issue of peace and justice, we do not ask our immersion partners to support teams financially. These participant contributions cover travel to and from the immersion location, room and board during the orientation and immersion phases, initial orientation and in-country orientation costs (some locations include basic language study), team retreat travel and expenses, and local transportation costs. Staff and advocacy teams serve as a resource to you as you consider ways to raise these funds. A sample fundraising letter can be found in your information packet.
Download information packet
What do I do about paying my student loans while participating in Radical Journey?
Participants will need to contact the financial aid office where they received their loans to check for deferment arrangements. Currently, Radical Journey does not offer a loan repayment program.
What if I don’t have a home or sending congregation for support?
Our desire is that Radical Journey be an experience available to all young adults who wish to be formed through service and cross-cultural learning, as followers of Jesus Christ. Connection to a home congregation is beneficial in this experience; however, we recognize that advocacy teams made up of family and friends can offer connection to your home community as well. Participants are strongly encouraged to find others, besides their parents, to lead this advocacy team. Staff can also serve to connect you to a congregation that may wish to offer support at various levels during this experience and beyond.
What can I expect in orientation?
Expect orientation to be a time to learn to know teammates, practice the practical skills necessary to orient yourself to a new location, and a time to gain tools that will be helpful for self-reflection and communication in this formational experience.
Where do we stay during orientation?
Orientation takes place in an urban context. All of the teams share dorm-style accommodations. Men and women have separate sleeping quarters, and married couples receive a private room.
When do we learn about our immersion location?
While we understand you are more than excited to learn all about your immersion location, orientation focuses on a broader range of cross-cultural learning. In each location we work together with partners, or coordinators, who live and minister in the local immersion community. Each immersion coordinator plans an in-country orientation specific to your immersion location. It is better to learn specific cultural expectations and logistics first-hand from our partners in the immersion location as they are the best source of this information. You may also find cultural research and language practice as a team valuable during the orientation month, and it is encouraged that the teams take initiative to do this on their own.
Where will we be serving in our immersion location?
Radical Journey is focused on the relational aspect of ministry, the balance of being and doing, so participants are asked to show up and engage in ways that are helpful to the community. Yet it’s understandable that you want to know where you’ll be serving over the coming year. We do our best to give you specific information. At the same time, because Radical Journey works in partnership with various immersion communities, we ask our immersion coordinators to work out service placements. Often times, coordinators are working with several details for your time: service placements, host families, language study arrangements, etc., and, therefore, you may not know your specific assignment(s) until you reach the immersion location. Some participants find this makes creating a fundraising letter and communication difficult. We have crafted a sample letter (see participant information packet) to help you talk about Radical Journey in a way that emphasizes the formational aspect of this experience. We have found congregations and individuals supportive regardless of the type of service you are offering in the immersion location.
Where will we live in the immersion location?
Living accommodations vary from location to location. In most locations, especially where language learning is part of the experience, participants are placed in host families. In other locations, participants live in an apartment or flat as a team.
What kind of support can I expect while in my immersion location?
It’s important in the formational process for you to have support and encouragement from others. For this reason, we ask you to form an advocacy team as you prepare for this experience. Your advocacy team may help you raise support, offer care and personal connection, and advocate on your behalf in the life of your sending congregation and community. The Radical Journey staff are also committed to walking with you on this journey. We are in regular contact and visit you in the immersion location partway through the year. Additionally, immersion coordinators serve as a primary source of support and care in the immersion location.
Tell me about reorientation … what can I expect in that month after my return?
When you return from the immersion location, all teams will spend the first week iin the original orientation location. This week is a re-entry retreat. The retreat offers space for you to rest, reflect, and prepare to return to your sending community. Though we know you are anxious and excited to reconnect with family and friends back home, this week is very important. It is expected that you will ask family and friends to respect this time, waiting to come until the end of this week. Upon your return to your sending community and congregation, you will seek ways – along with your advocacy team – to integrate your experience back into the life of the congregation. You will also meet regularly with a spiritual mentor or director and continue to watch for where God is at work and imagine ways to join in. We’ll talk more about this throughout your orientation and immersion time.