The Domovina Task Force of the Association of Croatian American Professionals has announced the inaugural Domovina Birthright Program trip scheduled for July 10-25, 2019.
DOMOVINA BIRTHRIGHT PROGRAM
The Domovina Birthright Program is for young adults of Croatian descent between the ages of 18 – 30 who want to learn about their Croatian heritage, explore the beauty and excitement of Croatia, connect with their Croatian identity and meet other young Croatian adults. Come join us for a once in a lifetime experience in Croatia.
What is Domovina?
Domovina is a unique, historical partnership between the people of Croatia through their government and the Association of Croatian American Professionals (ACAP). Domovina is a 16-day cultural and educational immersion tour of Croatia organized by the Croatian government.
Domovina’s founders created this program to send young Croatian adults from all over the world to Croatia as a gift in order to strengthen the ties between Croatia and Croatian communities around the world, to develop solidarity among Croatian youth from many diaspora communities, and to develop the importance of a birthright trip among Croatian youth.
As a participant, you will travel throughout the country, exploring sites of historic, cultural, and religious significance, hiking and taking in Croatia’s varied landscape and nature. Additionally, Croatian peers will join you for a significant part of the trip, introducing you to popular culture, music, and food and what it’s like to live in Croatia—and maybe even becoming lifelong friends.
Day 1. Wednesday July 10th 2019. Zagreb – Ilok – Vukovar
Day 2. Thursday July 11th 2019. Vukovar
Day 3. Friday 12th 2019. Đakovo-Osijek-Kopački rit-Vukovar
Day 4. Saturday July 13th 2019. Zagreb
Day 5. Sunday July 14th 2019. Zagreb
Day 6. Monday July 15th 2019. Zagreb- Rovinj – Grožnjan – Pula
Day 7. Tuesday July 16th 2019. Pula – Brijuni – Bale – Pazin
Day 8. Wednesday July 17th 2019 Pula – Smiljan – Knin
Day 9. Thursday July 18th 2019. Knin – Pakoštane – Kornati – Maškovića-han – Knin
Day 10. Friday July 19th 2019. Knin – Zadar – Šibenik – Knin
Day 11. Saturday July 20th 2019. Knin – Imotski – Split
Day 12. Sunday July 21st 2019. Split – Vis – Split
Day 13. Monday July 22nd 2019. Split
Day 14. Tuesday July 23rd 2019. Split – Dubrovnik
Day 15. Wednesday 24th 2019. Dubrovnik – Cavtat – Dubrovnik
Day 16. Thursday July 25th 2019. Dubrovnik – Split – Zagreb
What are the costs for participating in the Domovina Program?
The trip includes hotel accommodations, transportation, at least three meals per day, and other associated land costs (such as admission to sites) for the16-day trip to Croatia. The Croatian government will partially fund the program. Each participant will be asked to pay USD $1,250 towards the total cost of the trip.
Airfare to Croatia, gratuities, personal purchases, and travel/medical insurance are not included.
How do I apply for a trip?
It’s easy! Complete the application with ACAP: Domovina Application. Eligible candidates will be contacted for a telephonic interview.
Who is eligible?
The Domovina project is open to all Croatian young adults, ages 18 to 30 who have not lived in Croatia past the age of 12. Eligible individuals are those who identify as Croatian and have at least one Croatian birth grandparent.
What are the age requirements for the trip?
All participants must be between 18 and 30 as of July 1, 2019 and have finished high school by the time their trip departs.
If you have not turned 18 prior to July 1, you are not eligible to participate in the trip during 2019. If you are turned 31 prior to July 1, you are not eligible to participate.
What are the dates of the trip?
The Domovina trip starts in Zagreb on July 10, 2019 and finishes in Zagreb on July 25, 2019.
Details on the meeting location will be provided to participants accepted into the program.
Who will I travel with?
You will be part of a group of 44 participants, three local staff members, and one Croatian tour educator. The bus driver is part of the team, too!
What are the core programs and themes of each trip?
Though this is an educational program, you won’t be sitting in a chair in a lecture hall. Your trip will include touring, hiking, discussions, social events, and much more. The trip will include the following components:
• Narratives of the Croatian People
We visit key landmarks of historical, national, archaeological, and natural significance that reflect Croatian history and the roots of the Croatian people.
• Contemporary Croatia
We explore Croatia’s arts, culture, science and technology, environmental initiatives, and social discourse for an unmediated and responsible experience of the country through its achievements as well as challenges.
• Ideas and Values of the Croatian People
We examine core values that have been part of Croatian life throughout the ages.
What will we see?
The heroic city of Vukovar, the wine cellars of Ilok, the Osječka Tvrđa, the capital of all Croats – Zagreb, the Istrian gems: Bale, Grožnjan, Pula and Rovinj, the most beautiful Croatian islands: Brijuni, Vis and Kornati, the birthplace of Nikola Tesla, the Knin Fortress, the hidden beauties of Imotski and Pakoštane, Zadar and Šibenik, the Dubrovnik riviera.
What do you mean when you say that Croatian peers will be joining us?
Every trip includes a multi-day encounter with your Croatian peers. A key component of the trip is meeting and touring with Croatians of the same age. This is an opportunity to get to know Croatia through its people.
What sort of physical activity does a Domovina trip entail?
Participants will be expected to participate in extensive touring of the country, which may include walking long distances, climbing, hiking, swimming, and other strenuous activities. The program is very demanding, requiring participation in an average of 15 hours of programming daily, often including physically strenuous activities. All participants should be able to fully participate in the demanding itinerary including early wake-ups and late nights.
What will the accommodations and social environment be like on the Domovina trip?
Meeting and connecting with your peers is a big part of the Domovina experience. As such, you will be living in a communal environment. You will sleep in a dormitory or share living quarters with many other people and eat in communal dining facilities. You will share transportation (a tour bus) with up to 50 other people.
What if I get sick while on a DOMOVINA trip?
A doctor is always available and on call, as are local hospitals. In extreme situations, participants will be transferred to another city for specialized medical treatment when necessary and, where indicated, will later be returned to the country of origin for further treatment. You are responsible for having personal medical insurance coverage, which should be valid in Croatia throughout the period covered by the trip. (If you do not have medical insurance and are purchasing travel/medical insurance for the sole purpose of this trip, you may want to consider supplementary coverage for continuation of treatment/care in your home country if required when you return home.)
Can I extend my stay in Croatia or fly to Croatia on my own and then meet my group there?
Yes you can. The Domovina trip begins July 10 at 8 AM and ends in Zagreb July 25, 2019 at 8 pm. What you do before and after is up o you. And your parents!
Can I drink alcohol on a Domovina trip?
Drinking alcohol is permitted only under certain conditions. In order to ensure the safety of all participants and staff, we strictly enforce our alcohol policy.
Is it safe to travel to Croatia?
Absolutely! When it comes to security, we all know that Croatia is often in the news as one of the hottest tourist destinations in the world. And very safe. However, we will take additional precautions to ensure participant safety. We do not hesitate to make any and all changes to our itineraries as needed.
Will staff members accompany us throughout the trip?
Yes. Domovina is a supervised program where you travel together as a group. All trips are accompanied by a tour educator and three staff members.
What languages are offered by Domovina?
Currently, Domovina is conducted in English during all sessions. Therefore, you will need an acceptable level of English in order to join.
Once we’re in Croatia, will we have to travel or get around on our own?
No. Domovina is a supervised program where you travel together as a group. All trips are accompanied by a tour educator and four staff members.
How will we get around Croatia?
You will travel together as a group by bus and boat. All trip and drivers are subject to Domovina’s strict standards.
My parents are worried about me traveling to Croatia. Will they be able to reach me during the trip if there is an emergency?
Yes. While trips are running, Domovina operates an information line that is available weekdays, 9 am to 5 pm CET. After office hours, we have an emergency answering service to ensure that you can be reached if needed. We are always available via email at [email protected] and we will also provide you and your family with additional contact information. Additionally, you may choose, as many participants do, to bring your own phone with an international calling and data plan.
If you still have questions that we haven’t answered, or any of the above isn’t clear, all you need to do is ask. Learn more here or just email [email protected] or [email protected] and we will be glad to help.