Projects Abroad — volunteer
I signed up for a volunteer trip with PA after doing research on several different companies. I paid my almost $300 deposit for a trip that I would take in November. I contacted my trip planner/advocate in mid August to let her know that due to medical reasons that were beyond my control, I would not be able to take the trip as anticipated. I later received an email from someone telling me that I could reschedule the trip with a fee or cancel the trip and lose the money that I paid. I explained to him that it was an emergency that was beyond my control. The reason that I will not be able to make the trip is that my doctor informed me that I would need to have a surgery in mid October and I would be bed ridden and not able to travel for at least three weeks. Even after being told that it was a medical emergency, the representative said that there was nothing he could do about and told me that I could postpone the trip with a fee of upwards of $95. I asked to be contacted by a manager or supervisor and he sent me an email stating that they were the manager. All of the previous emails they sent me stated that they had the title of ADMINISTRATOR the next email that they sent had the title of Acting Deputy Director. They sent me a link to the terms and conditions of their page which mentions nothing about cancellations in the case of medical emergencies. They again offered to reschedule my trip for a fee. Even if they gave me the trip completely FREE I would refuse to go. I cannot imagine the treatment that I would receive if I were to have an emergency while in a foreign country with their employees. My experience with Projects Abroad has been horrible and I am still trying to receive a refund. On top of worrying about the damage caused by the Hurricane I am faced with an upcoming surgery AND stressing over trying to get funds back from a company that I was going to VOLUNTEER for. I am in conversation with my bank but I cannot believe that I have to go to such lengths to get my money back from a volunteer organization.
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