Frequently Asked Questions
The following information is provided to help answer some of the most commonly asked questions. If you need additional assistance, please submit your question to Donor Services on our Contact Us page. This information is kept as current as possible and is updated regularly.
Select an FAQ topic below:
General Information FAQs
Q: When was Project HOPE founded?
A: Project HOPE was founded by Dr. William B. Walsh, M.D., in 1958. The organization’s international headquarters is in Millwood, Virginia, and the current president and CEO is Rabih Torbay.
Q: What is Project HOPE’s Vision and Mission?
A: We envision a world where everyone has access to the health care they need to reach life’s full potential through a strong and resilient global community of health care workers.
Our mission is to place power in the hands of local health care workers to save lives across the globe. We are a global health and humanitarian relief organization, committed to transforming lives and uplifting communities by empowering healthcare workers to expertly implement and teach innovative lifesaving solutions, in times of need and into the future.
Q: What are Project HOPE’s main program priorities?
A: Project HOPE has five program priorities: maternal, neonatal and child health; infectious diseases; non-communicable diseases; disaster and health crises; and health policy.
Q: Are Project HOPE’s programs carried out on land or on hospital ships?
A: Project HOPE began its work on the S.S. HOPE, the world’s first peacetime hospital ship, in 1958. The S.S. HOPE completed 11 voyages, providing health care to vulnerable communities around the world, before being retired in 1974. Today, Project HOPE delivers health solutions via our staff, partners and volunteers on the ground worldwide.
Q: Does Project HOPE partner with other organizations to fulfill its mission?
A: Project HOPE’s focus is on sustainable impact and is committed to working in partnership with local government agencies, other international nonprofits, and the private sector to develop long-term solutions to complex health challenges.
Q: When did Project HOPE begin its disaster relief work and how many disasters has it responded to?
A: Project HOPE has responded to every major disaster since the 2004 Indonesian tsunami. Since then, HOPE has responded to disasters in Nepal, Haiti, Japan, China, the Philippines, and Indonesia. We have also responded to Hurricanes Katrina, Harvey, Maria and Dorian.
While Project HOPE’s emergency response teams provide lifesaving aid following disaster, we often stay behind to support communities as they recover with long-term support for damaged health care systems and communities.
Q: Why are volunteers crucial to Project HOPE?
A: Volunteerism has been at the heart of Project HOPE’s work since our founding in 1958. Today, Project HOPE’s volunteer professionals participate in a variety of ways across our organization, from deploying in emergencies to supporting our operations at home.
Q: How can I join the Project HOPE team?
A: Project HOPE staff work to increase access to health care services and improve the knowledge and skills of health care workers in communities in need around the world. Opportunities are available all over the world and change regularly based on program needs. You can view our current openings on our website or learn more about how to volunteer here.
Q: What is Health Affairs?
A: Health Affairs serves as a high-level, nonpartisan forum to promote analysis and discussion on improving health and health care. Among its products is the leading peer-reviewed journal called the “bible of health policy” by The Washington Post and a “pre-eminent” blog according to the New York Times. Health Affairs also produces newsletters, policy briefs, multi-media, and content collections. Health Affairs is the indispensable guide for decision-makers interested in health care and a vital resource for health policy professionals.
For more information and to subscribe, visit healthaffairs.org.
Q: Is Project HOPE a 501(c) 3 organization?
A: Project HOPE — The People to People Health Foundation — is recognized as tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the US Internal Revenue Code, and 100% of your gift is tax-deductible to the full extent of the law. Our Federal Tax ID number or Employer Identification Number (EIN) is 53-0242962.
Q: What is Project HOPE’s approach to financial accountability and transparency?
A: Over the years, Project HOPE has gained a reputation for financial integrity and efficiency. We take stewardship seriously and work to maximize the value of every contribution we receive. Ninety-two percent of our expended resources support our lifesaving health projects around the world. About 8% of expended resources go toward management and fundraising costs. Learn more on our Financial Accountability Page.
Q: What is a gift-in-kind?
A: In-kind gifts are donated materials, such as medicines and medical supplies, which are distributed to Project HOPE’s global health, humanitarian and disaster relief programs throughout the world. In-kind gifts may also be donated services such as volunteer hours that advance the mission of Project HOPE.
Q: Are in-kind donations considered as revenue?
A: Project HOPE does recognize the value of in-kind gifts and donated volunteer service as revenue. We report it as donated revenue separate from our cash revenue.
Q: How does Project HOPE value pharmaceutical gift-in-kind?
A: Project HOPE has more than 60 years of experience receiving and valuing pharmaceutical gifts-in-kind. We take seriously our responsibility to value GIK accurately and appropriately.
Project HOPE follows industry best practices in valuing donated items. All donated pharmaceuticals received in the U.S. are valued at their wholesale acquisition cost as published in the Red Book, a pharmaceutical industry manual. Other NGOs and organizations similar to Project HOPE value in-kind gifts using the Red Book.
Donated volunteer service value is calculated based on industry standards.
Q: How is Project HOPE rated by charity evaluators BBB and Charity Navigator?
A: Project HOPE is honored to be recognized by major independent charity evaluators with the highest ratings.
Better Business Bureau
Project HOPE meets all 20 comprehensive charity accountability standards of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance. These Standards for Charity Accountability help donors make informed decisions by focusing on a charity’s governance, finances, fundraising practices, and effectiveness.
Charity Navigator, an independent organization that rates nonprofit performance, has awarded Project HOPE a rating of four stars for Accountability and Transparency. When you make a tax-deductible donation, you can be assured your gift will be used to improve the health of children and their families around the globe.
You can find links to all of these third-party reviews on our Financial Accountability page.
Q: Does Project HOPE fund other organizations and charities?
A: Project HOPE is not a granting foundation. We are a non-governmental organization that delivers services to beneficiaries directly. In some countries, we form partnerships with local organizations to seek funding to implement activities together.
Q. Is Project HOPE affiliated with any religious organizations?
A: Project HOPE is an international humanitarian charity that provides services to people of all backgrounds and beliefs. We are not a religious organization but do enjoy the support of generous donors who give based on their faith.
Q: What is Project HOPE’s history with volunteers?
A: Project HOPE was founded on the willingness of physicians, nurses and other medical volunteers to travel the globe on a floating hospital ship – the SS HOPE – to provide medical care, health education and humanitarian assistance to people in need.
Today, volunteers for HOPE are integrated into our Global Health land-based missions to expand our program services and extend capacity to our local staff; and we also place volunteers at our Headquarters and Health Affairs journal.
Our volunteers have been a part of major disaster relief efforts beginning with our work in Southeast Asia after the 2004 Tsunami, Hurricane Katrina in the Gulf States in 2005, and the earthquakes in Nepal in 2015. Project HOPE also responded with a robust volunteer support to Haiti after the earthquake in 2010, to Japan following the tsunami/earthquake in 2011, and to the Philippines following Typhoon Haiyan in 2013. Volunteers continue to respond to disaster relief efforts today. Our volunteers also participate in annual health education and humanitarian assistance missions in Latin America, West Africa, and the Oceania region.
The generosity and support of our volunteers is truly inspiring, enabling us to respond not only to immediate natural disasters but to change people’s lives for the long-term with health education and lifesaving medicine.
Q: Who can volunteer?
A: Project HOPE seeks subject matter experts with experience in Maternal, Neonatal and Child Health, Disasters and Health Crises, Infectious Diseases, Noncommunicable Diseases, and Health Policy. All volunteers must be at least 18 years old. Visit our webpage to find a list of our current opportunities and the requirements per opportunity.
Q: How do I apply to become a volunteer?
A: All current opportunities Project HOPE offers are listed on our volunteer webpage. Please visit projecthope.org/volunteer to learn more about the program and how you can volunteer today.
Q: What can I expect with the application process?
A: Once you have identified an opportunity that matches your skill set, you will submit an application which includes uploading your resume. Applications without resumes attached will not be considered. Once you have successfully submitted your application, you will receive a confirmation email. If you are a match to the opportunity you have applied for, you will be contacted for a phone interview. See the Volunteer Checklist to learn about the entire application and onboarding process.
Q: What support is available to me as a volunteer?
A: The Global Volunteers Program team at Project HOPE headquarters is here to walk through each step of the volunteer process with you including introducing you to field staff via teleconferencing, sending you your welcome packet, providing you with best practices for traveling, and providing you with orientation on expectations for your specific role and as a Project HOPE volunteer.
Once you arrive at your location, you will have a Project HOPE staff member be your go-to person for all logistical, social, and cultural support. Depending on your role, you may also have a supervisor during your working hours at a hospital or clinic.
Whether or not Project HOPE arranges your travel, accommodations, meals, and ground transportation will depend on the volunteer opportunity. Airport pickup however is provided to all volunteers.
Q: How much does it cost to be a volunteer?
A: Costs to consider include roundtrip flight, accommodations, meals, and ground transportation. Every volunteer opportunity is unique. The costs and what is incurred by Project HOPE or the volunteer vary. Each recruitment announcement will describe which costs you can expect to incur.
Donor Services FAQs
Q: What is Project HOPE’s commitment to donors?
A: Our work would not be possible without our donors who generously contribute their time and resources. Your support for our mission saves lives and transforms health care systems around the world.
As part of our commitment to our donors, volunteers and advocates, Project HOPE promotes accountability and transparency in everything we do. You have a right to be informed about how we intend to use donated resources, to view our current financial statements, and to trust that your information will be handled with respect and confidentiality to the extent provided by law.
We are committed to responding to your questions promptly and truthfully. A dedicated Donor Services team is available to assist you with your donation, communication preference or any other request. You can reach our team at 1-844-349-0188, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. EST. You can also contact our Donor Services team via our website.
Q: What are the different ways I can donate to Project HOPE?
Thank you for supporting our mission of providing lifesaving aid to those around the world. The fastest and easiest way to donate to Project HOPE is via our website.
To donate over the phone, call our Donor Services team toll-free at 1-844-349-0188, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. EST.
You may also mail your donation to our gift processing center by printing and mailing this form to:
P.O. Box 5029
Hagerstown, MD, 21741-5029
We also offer several other avenues through which to support Project HOPE. Click here to learn more about how to give via your donor advised fund, give your IRA rollover, give a gift of stocks or securities, wire a cash transfer gift, or create a legacy of HOPE by including us in your estate plans.
Q: Who is a HOPE Lifter and how do I become one?
A: HOPE Lifters are our special group of donors who give monthly. They enable us to confidently carry out our mission knowing there is steady and ongoing support. To become a HOPE Lifter, please make your monthly donation here. You can also call our Donor Services line for assistance.
Q: How can I manage my communication preferences?
A: Project HOPE strives for accurate, respectful and relevant communication with our donors. We do not sell or rent our list of donors and volunteers. From time to time, we may exchange a portion of our list with other worthwhile organizations.
We are committed to properly managing the care of your information and communication preferences. If you would like to control the contacts you receive from us, please contact our Donor Services team via our website.
Q: How can I update my donor information?
A: If you would like to correct or update your personal information, modify your mailing preferences, or if you do not wish to participate in our list exchange activities, please contact our Donor Services team via our website.
Q: Does Project HOPE follow the Direct Marketing Association’s Commitment to Consumer Choice?
A: Yes. As a nonprofit member of the Direct Marketing Association, Project HOPE follows the DMA Guidelines for Ethical Business Practice and Commitment to Consumer Choice. You can have confidence knowing we have taken the important steps necessary to safeguard your privacy and mailing preferences.
The Direct Marketing Association can also assist you via their program, DMA Choice, which allows you to define the mail you would like to receive from charitable organizations and cut back on mail you are not interested in. You can register online via their website.
Q. The mailings I receive from Project HOPE seem costly. Why not use that money for programs and send me emails only?
A: Thank you for expressing your concerns about the cost of the mailings you have received. In order to help as many people as possible, organizations like ours try to reach out to those who may be interested in supporting our work saving lives around the world. In fact, the cost can be as little as a first-class postage stamp.
We have found that corresponding with our donors through the mail is an effective way to reach a wide variety of people, educate them about our programs, and increase donations so that Project HOPE can continue to help those in need. Our mailing schedule can be customized to meet your individual needs. You can let us know how you wish to be contacted by contacting our Donor Services team via our website.
Q: I would prefer to reduce my calls and mailings. How can I do this?
A: We will gladly meet your request and update your communication preferences. Our mailing schedule can be customized to meet your individual needs and you can let us know exactly how you wish to be contacted by contacting our Donor Services team via our website.
It is possible that you will receive additional mailings from us because all of our mailings are prepared weeks in advance. This is the most economical means for us, so please recycle any mailings you receive.
Q: I would like to upgrade or change my regular monthly HOPE Lifter donation. How do I make that change?
A: Thank you for your generosity and willingness to help more people around the world. Please contact our Donor Services team by completing this email form. You can also call 1-844-349-0188, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. EST and we will assist you.
Q. Can I restrict my donation to certain regions or countries?
A: We appreciate your interest in supporting specific programs and areas. While it is possible to have your gift directed toward a certain region or country where we are currently working, we may not have a current need in that area. By not restricting your contribution for a specific project, you support our core mission and enable us to allocate our resources more efficiently to help people in areas where the need is greatest.
In order to ensure we can respond quickly with lifesaving aid to emergencies and health crises around the world, 15% of restricted giving that is designated for a specific response will be directed to our Global Health Emergency Fund. The Global Health Emergency Fund supports all of our work around the world, helping respond to emergencies and health crises, train health workers, and save lives wherever and whenever the need is greatest.
We are happy to speak with you about your donation. For more information, call our Donor Services team at 1-844-349-0188, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. EST.
Q. What percentage of my donation goes to programs?
A: In Fiscal Year 2019, 92% of our expended resources were spent on our programs and 8% were spent on management and fundraising costs. These ratios change year to year, and you can always find the latest information on our Financial Accountability Page.
Q. Will I receive a receipt for my donation?
Special note during the COVID-19 pandemic: Due to the spread of COVID-19 in the United States, we may experience delays in receiving and processing mail or sending receipts for gifts. Please rest assured that we are continuing to send gift receipts by mail, despite any potential delays, but an online donation at projecthope.org/donate is an easy, alternative way you can support our lifesaving work. You will immediately receive a receipt in your email. Thank you for your patience. Your support of Project HOPE is never more important than at times like this, and we’re deeply grateful.
A: If your contribution was a one-time donation, you will receive an official printed acknowledgment/tax receipt via postal mail approximately 10 business days from the date of your gift. For an online donation, you will receive an email confirmation and a PDF attachment of your official acknowledgment/tax receipt that you can print at home. Additionally, all first-time donors to Project HOPE will receive a welcome package with more information about the impact of your gift.
If you are a member of our HOPE Lifters regular giving program and give monthly via direct withdrawals from your credit card or bank account, you will automatically receive a tax receipt for your cumulative annual contributions at the end of each calendar year (customarily during February).
If you have not received your acknowledgement letter or tax receipt within the timeframes listed above, please contact Donor Services via our website or by calling 1-844-349-0188, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. EST. Please provide your full name and mailing address as it appears in our records so that we are able to locate your account. Once we find your donor record and the record of your gift(s) we will mail your tax receipt straightaway.
If you make a contribution of stock, we will receive your gift without your contact information. To ensure that we can properly acknowledge your donation, please contact our Planned Giving department at 1-800-544-4673, ext. 960, to discuss the details of your stock gift.
If you make a contribution through Combined Federal Campaign (CFC), all receipting is provided through your campaign manager. If you choose, we will receive your contact information at the end of the campaign. To ensure that we can properly thank you for your generosity, at the time of your pledge please select the option to share your name and address details with Project HOPE.
Q. Does Project HOPE offer planned giving?
A: Project HOPE has benefited enormously over the years from the planned gifts made by individuals who are committed to Project HOPE and its important work around the world. Planned gifts ensure our ability to help people around the world and allow you to leave a legacy of support by joining our Legacy of HOPE Society.
Project HOPE has a wide range of planned gift options for you to choose from including bequests, charitable gift annuities, and retirement assets. To learn more about the various planned giving options available, please contact our Planned Giving Office at 800-544-4673, ext. 960, or at [email protected]. You may also visit our Planned Giving page for more information.
Q: Does Project HOPE accept gifts of stock or securities?
A: Yes. Gifts of stock or securities help Project HOPE continue our critical mission. Please follow the instructions on this form and ensure it is sent back to us so we can properly acknowledge your gift.
Q. Does Project HOPE have a matching gift program?
A: If you or one of your family members works for an organization with a matching gift program, you can double or even triple your gift. Please search our online matching gifts database to see if your company will match your gift to Project HOPE. Because each company has a different set of instructions for matching an employee gift, please see your company’s Human Resources Department for details.
Project HOPE is happy to confirm your gift or to satisfy any other requirements your company may have. Please email us at [email protected] or direct all correspondence regarding your matching gift to our gift processing center at:
Gift Processing Center
P.O. Box 5029
Hagerstown, MD, 21741-5029