A vital part of our work in South Africa is the involvement of service teams that travel from across the United States. For twelve days, team members are involved in a variety of outreaches and service projects.


2020 Trip Dates Available

Cost – $2,250 + airfare

January 16-28, 2020 (St. Francis of Assisi Trip)

January 30-February 11, 2020

February 13-25, 2020

March 5-17, 2020

May 7-19, 2020

May 21-June 2, 2020

July 9-21, 2020

July 23- August 4, 2020 (Iowa Catholic Radio Trip)

August 20-September 1, 2020

September 3-15, 2020 (Days for Girls)

October 15-27, 2020

2021 Trip Dates Available

Cost – $2250 + airfare

January 14-26, 2021

February 4-16, 2021

February 25-March 9, 2021

March 11-23, 2021

May 6-18, 2021

May 27-June 8, 2021

July 8-20, 2021

July 29-August 10, 2021

September 2-14, 2021

September 30-October 12, 2021 (Days for Girls)

October 21-November 2, 2021



Team members will be trained on how to fit individuals for distance and/or reading glasses once they get to the Blessman International campus in South Africa. It is a wonderful opportunity to sit down one on one with these precious people and get to know them, listen to them, and pray for any needs or concerns they may have before actually fitting them for eyeglasses. It is wonderful to see their eyes light up when you find the right strength of glasses that really helps them see and/or read better than they have for a very long time.


Another outreach Blessman International teams often take part in is a shoe distribution. It is a similar concept as the optical outreach, where team members are able to sit down one on one with children and adults to pray with them and minister to their lives on a more personal level before they wash their feet, and fit them for a new pair of shoes. They often want to keep their old, worn out pair of shoes as well as the new pair. This outreach is often done in schools or rural villages.


Days for Girls distributions are done in partnership with an organization called Days for Girls International. This outreach is done by female team members only. It involves distributing re-useable feminine hygiene kits to women and girls in impoverished schools and villages who would not otherwise have access to the proper items that they would need for their period. It is also a wonderful time to sit down with these young women and talk to them on a deeper level about their lives and the incredible value they have. Many times team members can have meaningful conversations with these women that they would not otherwise get from their family or parents. Team members will be trained for this outreach in South Africa as well.


Other outreaches that team members may take part include visiting a children’s center or orphanage, serving Meals from the Heartland meals at the Del Cramer children’s campus, helping run a VBS program, planting or harvesting on one of our farms, painting, construction projects, and a host of other service projects as Blessman International is continuously growing and changing. We always ask team members to come with a heart to serve and a readiness to be flexible with the schedule.


While in South Africa, team members stay at the beautiful Leroy Blessman Lodge of Dreams located on the Blessman International campus. The lodge consists of a central building that includes a commercial kitchen and meeting areas for visiting teams and four smaller chalets. Each chalet has two rooms on each end with its own bathroom and a common room between the bedrooms. Some of the bedrooms accommodate couples, and others have twin size bunk beds.


In addition to all of the service work that our teams do in South Africa, they also have the opportunity to take advantage of some of the unique tourist opportunities that can be found in South Africa. Among the available opportunities are a photo safari where you will see giraffes, lions, elephants, cheetahs, and rhinoceros. You may also choose to participate in the Walk with Lions or ride an elephant.  Hunting enthusiasts can also hunt African animals through our Hunt for Hunger partnership with NB Safaris.


Is there an age limit to go on a trip?
Anyone 18 years old or above may apply for one of our trips. Anyone under the age of 18 may still apply and his/her application will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Families wishing to bring their children along should contact one of our staff members to discuss their individual situation.

What will the weather be like?
South Africa is in the Southern Hemisphere and so the seasons are opposite of those in the United States. It is a large country and the temperature varies much like in the US. You can visit and follow their links to find out what the weather is expected to be like during your trip.

What about malaria?
Most places we work are Malaria free. We will let you know before you come if Malaria is a risk and if you will need prophylactics/preventatives. If prophylactics/preventatives are needed, they can easily be acquired through your personal physician.

Do I have to have any immunizations before the trip?
No immunizations are required for travel to South Africa. However, we strongly encourage every team member to consult your physician about what immunizations he/she recommends for your individual situation. We do recommend that you are up-to-date on all US vaccinations including tetanus and Hepatitis A and B.

Do I need a visa for entering South Africa?
You do not need a visa before your trip.  You will be given an automatic 90-day visa upon arrival in South Africa for no charge.  You will need a valid passport. Any fees for obtaining your passport or airline ticketing fees related to failure to receive your passport on time are your responsibility.  Passports must be valid and must have an expiration date of at least 6 months past the end of your trip.

If I raise donations for my trip, are they tax deductible?
Many team members choose to raise funds for their trip as opposed to paying for their trip on their own. Blessman International, Inc. is a non-profit charitable organization as described in Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3). Contributions to your trip cost may be deductible for income tax purposes if they are made directly to Blessman International. Funds may be raised by sending letters to friends, businesses, community organizations, or by the combined efforts of your team with group fundraisers. Any method for raising funds is the responsibility of the individual or team. Trip costs must be paid in full at least 60 days prior to your departure.