Coronavirus Information

Published 26/05/2020

Latest Advice On COVID-19

Here you can find Think Pacific’s latest advice and information regarding COVID-19

Current customer service support 

Please note that due to the current COVID-19 outbreak, we are operating remotely and with a reduced staff team and consequently some responses may be delayed.  Please contact us on our normal office number, which is +44 113 335 9919 or email info@thinkpacific.com in the first instance.

Project postponements and International travel restrictions

On the advise of the Fijian Ministry and British Foreign Office, all programs up to and including the 1st August 2020 are currently postponed and being re-scheduled.

There are Exceptional Travel Advisory Notices in place as countries around the world respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including putting in place travel and border restrictions.

The British Foreign Office advises British nationals against all but essential international travel.

This advice is in place until further notice, this means that our projects are suspended until travel restrictions are lifted.

Airports in Fiji are also currently closed to all international travel and transit visitors until further notice.

What is the COVID-19 situation in Fiji?

There have been fewer than 20 reported cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Fiji as of 26th may 2020.  However, due to the risks, restrictions are in place including all Fiji airports currently being closed to international visitors.

Think Pacific Foundation within Fiji

Think Pacific is a local Fijian charity, which works year round to support rural Fijian communities and long term aims in partnership with the Fijian Ministry of Health. Although we’re operational in Fiji  with present government travel advisories in place and consequent travel insurance policy restrictions, volunteers are sadly prevented from currently joining our projects on the ground in Fiji.

We are committed to achieving all the aims that were planned to take place in 2020 and Think Pacific shall be re-scheduling to visit every village and support every rural community we promised.

Being a local Fijian charity means as soon as restrictions are lifted, and it is safe to do so, we can be operational very quickly to resume development programs. We have re-scheduled a large number of dates for 2021 also.

How do I transfer my project date?

We have introduced a policy to waive any amendment fees, so any volunteer due to join a program in 2020 can delay their project to any future date.

We will be launching projects as soon as travel bans are lifted and we will be adding additional 1 month, 2 month and 16 day dates as required.

We already have over 600 volunteers confirmed for our 2021 projects. Transferring to 2021 is proving the most popular option and we have launched a series of new dates.

Please email info@thinkpacific.com to request our date change online link and choose your preferred option.

As a charity in Fiji, we have staff on the ground and are active year round running initiatives. We are keen to maintain status quo for the communities we support and return to projects as soon as possible, as all our stakeholders in Fiji do also.  We feel more than ever that there is a need to pull together, to stay connected with the world and look forward to resuming meaningful travel as soon as possible.

Our charity aims in Fiji would not be achieved without the amazing students who join us and support our Foundation. We thank every single one of you for continuing to fundraise, plan and prepare for your program.

What about flights to Fiji?

Flights are separate to our projects and we advise contacting your flight company or agent for their policy on changing your flights to a later project.  If you have booked flights through STA Travel, here is the STA Travel Flight Page for your reference.

Many airlines are offering free transfers of flights to future dates, so you may wish to confirm your new project date and transfer flights to align with this.

What about travel insurance?

We advise all our volunteers have comprehensive travel insurance.  Once travel bans have been lifted, please inform your travel insurance of your project date to ensure you are fully covered.

What measures are Fiji taking to contain COVID-19?

Fiji is a very popular tourism destination and the government has been really proactive in its measures to protect the country.  Once projects resume, we will follow all local guidance relating to COVID-19 and update volunteers accordingly.

What is Fiji’s health care like?

Fiji has 3 major divisional hospitals, 18 sub-divisional hospitals, more than 80 Health Centres and approximately 99 Nursing Stations located across provinces.

The Ministry of Health have advised that the country is well prepared, with action plans, testing centres and quarantine facilities ready if needed.

In a case of emergency, MIOT Pacific Hospital is a private hospital and the one advised by Think Pacific to use as the premier facility in the country.

Health care in Fiji is not always free at the point of use and payment is often required at the time of treatment. However, with comprehensive travel insurance, you are able to claim costs back after treatment or upon your return home.

Our promise to you, as a small and personal organisation

We take our safety obligations extremely seriously.

Think Pacific has an impeccable safety record. We’re a highly experienced, small and personal team who guide over 1000 student volunteers to Fiji annually. We’re the absolute experts in the region.  Fiji is not only our pride and passion, it’s the only place we guide projects. We know the country better than anyone and this focus means we’re the authority on advising people about Fiji, and supporting you when you arrive with our staff, network and contacts.

We have worked through global health events in the past, such as Zika virus in 2017 as well as natural disasters, such as Tropical storms, all with complete safety, satisfaction and high praise from volunteers for their incredible experiences.

We’ll continue to do all we can to support volunteers, our university partners and Fijian communities at this time and look forward to resuming programs in Fiji as soon as it is safe and appropriate to do so.   We can’t wait to welcome you to Fiji.

New Virtual Internship alternative

If you’re still wishing to  make a difference in Fiji,  you may want to explore our New Virtual Internship Program.

In collaboration with our Fijian government and local charity partners in Fiji, we have developed a unique project.  Our Virtual Internship provides you with the chance to gain unrivaled experience in the charity, social enterprise and NGO sector, develop your skills and work on real projects from home that make a tangible difference  to local charity initiatives in Fiji.

We are providing be-spoke discounts to all our volunteers currently signed up to join a project with us.   Please contact us at info@thinkpacific.com or call 0113 335 9919 for more information.

 

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