Ok, it’s not really on the best sellers list and in fact, you can’t buy it at all. For those that are involved with delivering the People to People Ambassador Programs experience, it is most definitely on our “Must Read” list. I’m talking about the Ambassador Leader Travel Handbook that every leader who participates on our programs receives. They are now anxiously awaiting the arrival of the 2011 edition.
Each leader at People to People Ambassador Programs completes online training, similar to the ones completed by our students yet far more comprehensive. In addition, these leaders also come together in the fall to meet with their local Area Directors to receive hands-on training. Then in the spring prior to travel the leaders again come together, this time to focus on training specific to safely and effectively traveling around the world with forty eager and wonderful Student Ambassadors.
The Ambassador Leader Travel Handbook
The Ambassador Leader Travel Handbook has been around for years and is sent to every leader during the winter months. Each leader is required to read the manual from cover-to-cover prior to the in-person training so that they are fully up-to-date on any and all policy changes that may have taken place during the revision period. They then keep the Ambassador Leader Travel Handbook with them to refer to it during the actual program.
Immediately after the final student programs return home, The Delegate Care team lock themselves up in a room so they can review every single situation that came up during the travel season. Then they look to the Ambassador Leader Travel Handbook and determine how to edit, re-write, or in the event the issue is not already addressed, add a new policy to cover the new found situation. With over 40 years experience traveling students on these life changing adventures we have seen an incredible array of situations that can come up but we are always open for any new information that will help us be even more successful in caring for your child. We then spend the next couple of months reviewing this handbook to make sure it provides clear direction to the leaders to ensure the safest and most enjoyable travel experience for our students.
Examples of the Content
For example, on page 11, a leader can read about how to strengthen the bond and teamwork among the four leaders on the program. On page 14-18 you will find a “Checklist for Success” designed to support the leaders and outline the best methods for communicating with the Delegation Manager. On page 19 you will find the “No alcohol policy for all leaders.” All of chapter 4 is dedicated to helping the leaders deal with performance situations like what to do with a picky eater, or when can cell phones and iPods be used. Based on our many years of experience traveling students we have seen how many things students can come up with and we have a policy in this handbook for addressing the issue. Chapter 5 deals with “Safety Day-to-Day” and chapter 6 guides the leader through the process of seeking medical attention when it is called for. When a situation comes up with an ill child, we talk with the parents and when needed, take the student to a medical professional to clearly understand what the problem is.
Last year we had a few different students with more serious issue like being diagnosed with diabetes or epilepsy right on program. In these cases the leader did exactly what they are trained to do. They noticed a problem with the student and immediately contacted the program office. We then worked with the families and quickly made arrangements to have the child seen by a medical professional and the diagnosis was made. The book goes on to cover first-aid tips, accommodations, insurance information as well as pages and pages of very useful information for these leaders.
The Ambassador Leader Travel Handbook serves as our comprehensive resource for leaders to ensure that every student that travels on a People to People Ambassador program is safe and well cared for while in our care.
With that, I wish you all safe travels and a healthy life.
Senior Director of Health and Safety