Institute for International Cooperation and Development

IICD Michigan was incorporated in 1997 as a not-for-profit organization in the state of Michigan. IICD Michigan is an independent research non-profit. The Internal Revenue Service has determined that IICD Michigan is an organization as described in the revenue code 501(c) 3. This means that IICD is exempt from federal taxation of its activities and that donors can deduct donations to IICD from the income declared in their tax return. The organization will not discriminate by race, ethnicity, national origins, religious belief, gender or orientation.




About IICD

IICD Michigan

1. Do you have any rules I have to follow?
Our frames are 'no drugs and no alcohool'. These cannot be waived nor discussed. You as a participant at IICD agree to these frames before enrolling, and they are in effect during the entire program.

We have "house rules" like our food policy, rules for driving the cars, no smoking indoor, etc. We also have a set of standards like how to keep the kitchen clean, the laundry, recycling, etc. You can read more about our frames here.

2. Will I need a visa for going to the projects in Africa?
You will need a visa for the country where you go for your service period. This we help you with during the preparation – so be sure to have a passport valid for at least 3-4 years!

3. How do I live at IICD?
IICD has a dormitory where we all live. You will have a room with 1 or 2 roomates and 2 rooms share one bathroom.

4. I am a vegetarian. Is that a problem?
No, not at all. We are used to catering for vegetarians. The menu planning, shopping and cooking is done by teachers and participants together. So there is plenty of opportunity for you to promote good and healthy vegetarian dishes. You can read more about our food policy here.

5. Can I cut the training period down to 2 months?
No, the program is made in it's entirety and cannot be changed.

6. Can I bring my pet?
If you want to bring a pet to IICD you will have to discuss the terms of the agreement and you should write a letter to the Teachers Council explaining your reasons and your plans. You will not be able to take your pet to the project in Africa.

7. How many hours a week do we study?
This programe is full time! It is intensive and you will be busy with many tasks and activities. We also have program in the evenings and weekends.

8. What happens if I enroll for the program and decide not to start?
The enrolment fee of $400 is not refundable, so if you decide not to start your place will go to another person.

9. What happens if I start the program and then decide not to do it?
Your tuition fee wil be reimbursed according to the contract. If you get a scholership you will not be reimbursed. You need to leave the institute or the project right before you took the decision to quit.

10. What happens if I don't get along with the people in my team?
Part of the training is to learn how to cooperate with all kinds of people, and you will train how to solve the conflicts in your team, to accept, respect and compromise. We will have interesting discussions about team work. You will need this capacity at the projects and further on in life.

11. Who are the teachers at IICD?
We are a very mixed bunch – from different countries and with a range of different qualifications and experiences. Some are former Development Instructors, some are not, some have many years of teaching experience, some do not. We are committed people and we believe in the movement and the change we are bringing to the world.

12. Can I become a teacher at IICD?
When you have completed the program, and if you would like to stay on and work as a teacher, you can ask for a meeting with the Headmaster. Together you will decide if you are ready to take the challenge, and then agree about the next step. We regard completion of the program as the best qualification to become a DI teacher.

13. What do the letters DRH stand for?
DRH is short for ”Den Rejsende Hojskole” or, in English, “The Travelling Folk High School”. This type of school started in Denmark in 1970. It was a time when young adults started to travel all over the world. In those first years of the DRH the students and teachers said that “the world is our classroom”.
The knowledge that we had in those days about other people in our world was very limited. Therefore, travelling was a big learning experience.
Stereotypical perspectives about other cultures and their people disappeared, and we learned a lot of new things. What was learned and experienced in one year of travel was so rich that you could compare it to fulfilling a whole education. From the beginning the students and teachers at the DRH slept, ate and shared their life with the local people wherever they went.

14. What is the DRH Movement?
The DRH movement is a cooperation between 7 DRH schools in 5 countries on 2 continents. You can learn more by visiting the web site:

15. What is the connection between Humana People to People and the DRH Movement?
The very first of the organisations forming the Humana People to People movement was DAPP - Development Aid from People to People. It was started in Denmark in November 1977 by a group of people originating from the first DRH school.

16. When did the first Development Instructor program started?
In 1980. The first volunteers built schools in the newly independent Zimbabwe. Teachers and participants at the first DRH school felt a need to DO something about the injustices they had learned about during their travels. So the first volunteers were called Solidarity Workers!

17. Do I have any holiday in the program?
There is 1 week Christmas holiday in December. Apart from that, there is not time off for holidays, once in a while, depending on your team organization you could have open program on Sunday.

18. I don’t want to travel for Christmas. Can I stay at the school?
Yes, you are welcome to do that. IICD is never closed.

19. How many people are in each team?
There are between 10 and 25 people in each team.

20. Can I participate in cultural activities like singing, painting and dancing at IICD?
Yes, often students form their own culture clubs at the school, and normally there are many activities going on during a week with anything from different sports and yoga to karaoke and painting.
If you have a special interest, skill or talent, you should start your own club!

21. How long are the programs?
The Fighting with The Poor teams is 18 months.
The Teacher Training is 3 years.

22. Can I drive a car in USA?
Yes. If you have a drivers license one teacher at IICD will make a test to make sure you know the traffic rules in the USA and to qualify you as a driver!

23. What documents do I need to bring?
For your visa applications for the 6 months in Africa, and possibly for more countries if you travel overland to the project, you will need a passport valid for at least 3 years, documents from previous workplaces and college or university certificates.

24. Can I use my experience as a DI in future employment?
Yes, it can be useful for your future, but of course it depends on what kind of work you are looking for. In order to get a certificate you need to complete the whole 18 months of the program.

25. Do you teach English as a part of the program?
No. But you will have good possibilities for learning in our English speaking environment – and there are always some students who are keen to teach!

26. Can I go back to work at a project again, after finishing the program?
Yes, there are different possibilities for continuing to work together with IICD and Humana People to People. You can make a longer commitment and apply for a position as Project Leader with Humana People to People or come back to become a teacher at IICD.

27. Does IICD have any cooperation with NGOs in the local area?
Yes, we do, we have a good cooperation about events and different activities with some local organizations in Detroit, our nearest city, as well as in the local area.