Frequently Asked Questions

Q: I may want to become a local partner. Please tell me more.

The number of requests we get from potential local partners grows each year. In addition to basic info about the dates and location you are considering, we will need to learn more about your needs and goals, marketing plan, budget, project team (including other NGOs), and how we can help you; i.e., a simple business plan. We will be happy to help you prepare this. For further info and to get the process started, go to the “Contact” page and fill in the form.

Q: How do I sign up to be a discussion leader, guest speaker, or other staff position?

Go to the “Contact” page and fill in the form. Tell us how you heard of us, your areas of expertise, and why you think you would fit into our program. Please note that our staff are volunteers, and pay their own travel expenses and camp fees.

Q: Do you customize each camp so that it is unique?

Yes. We start with a core list of classical liberal discussion topics, and guidelines for the schedule and facilities. Then we modify and expand the program to meet the needs of the local partners and their markets. Some prefer to emphasize entrepreneurship. Others favor inviting more local guest speakers. We also try to make time for recreation and sightseeing, depending on the facilities available, and the weather.

Q: How much do your services cost?

It would be impossible to post a standard list of services here, because the nature of the services and their cost vary from country to country and year to year. To discuss in detail the services you might need, and the time frame, and the location, and get a customized quote, go to the “Get Involved” tab to the right or the “Contact” page and fill in the form.

Q: How far in advance should we request your services?

Three months is the minimum; six months is better. The three primary factors involved in the initial planning for a camp are (a) booking a suitable venue, (b) scheduling teachers, and (c) recruiting enough students. In addition, together we must form an effective team, and develop a marketing plan and budget.

Q: Do you have a standard contract that specifies each party’s responsibilities, costs, schedules, etc.?

We have guidelines for designing a mutually beneficial contract, and we work closely with each local partner to make sure that both parties can keep their basic commitments.

Q: Are scholarships available to cover at least part of my camp fees and travel expenses?

Local partners may choose to establish and administer a scholarship fund to assist students with camp fees. The LP often asks students to compete for the limited funds by writing an essay, for example. Students are responsible for their own travel expenses, since most do not live too far away.

Q: I may need a visa to attend a camp. Will you help me obtain it?

You will be responsible for researching the visa requirements for your country, and paying any fees. Some governments make this difficult, expensive, and time-consuming. Others make it fast, simple, and cheap. We try to help in two ways: first, we usually put visa information for each camp on its web page; second, our local partners are willing to send invitation letters — but not to strangers. If we don’t already know you, we will ask you to provide a letter of reference from someone we know. But don’t delay! If you plan to attend a camp and need a visa, start the process immediately. Some countries take over a month to process a visa application.

Q: Do students need to prepare anything before coming to a camp?

For some camps, you may be asked to download and read some material before you arrive. You may also be asked to write a short essay, especially if you are applying for a scholarship.

Q: Do we have daily assignments, such as reading or writing, to do outside of class?

Usually, no. At each camp we try to involve all students in some kind of presentation, debate, business plan presentation, or talent show. On rare occasions, we may ask that you read some brief passages in the evening to prepare for the next day’s classes.

Q: What sort of rules do you have regarding dress code, attendance, other behavior?

You are expected to attend all scheduled classes and other events, unless we specifically announce that something is optional. First of all, the teachers invest a significant amount of time and money to prepare for and travel to the camp (and so do you!) Second, one day’s discussion may depend on what you learned the previous day. In particular, the entrepreneurship part of the program starts with some goal setting which leads to the preparation of a mini-business plan before camp is completed. So, out of respect for the teachers, our hosts, and the other students, as well as your own benefit, please plan to attend all sessions. More generally, we ask that you act in a responsible and respectful manner, which is the norm for libertarians, anyway. Most camps are held in resort areas in warm weather. At times, our groups may even meet outside. Therefore, the dress code is very casual, unless specified otherwise.

Q: Will I get a certificate?

Yes. Participants completing a Liberty Camp receive a certificate at the end of the week.

Q: Do teachers receive any compensation for their time or expenses?

Teachers donate their time, and usually pay their own expenses, to assist at a camp. They do this because they are highly motivated to spread classical liberal ideas, and they find their greatest reward in meeting others who share their interest.

Q: How many hours should I expect to teach, in 5 days of camp?

We usually ask new teachers to prepare at least one hour-long presentation, which includes a Q&A period, and to participate in informal small group discussions.

Q: Do teachers prepare their own material, or do you provide it?

Some teachers prefer to prepare their own material, and others will teach from materials that we provide. For example, a teacher could take our outline for the entrepreneurship program, or other books, articles, and study guides, and adapt them for her classes. We meet with the teachers the day before the camp to do any needed fine tuning. (Flexibility helps!)

Q: How many students are in a typical class?

Our groups have ranged in size from 10 to 120, but typically, we have 30-40 students.

Q: I know what a native speaker is, but what is an “equivalent”?

Many people speak English as well as, and often better than, a native speaker. They typically combine a love of languages in general, a special fondness for English, extensive study of English in ways that natives never pursue, years of living in an English-speaking country (to acquire the natural rhythm of speech and use of idiom), and possibly some sort of natural linguistic gift. We proudly claim to specialize in finding such individuals, who also have the necessary teaching skills, to provide the best possible camp discussion leaders, whether or not he or she learned English as the first language.

Q: How important is certification (TEFL/TESL, etc.)?

Most of our teachers do not have these certifications. If you do, you have a head start, because you’ll have the principles of teaching already ingrained through your studies.

Q: What kind of equipment and facilities do you normally have at a camp?

It varies widely. At some camps, we have had state-of-the-art meeting rooms and A/V equipment. At others, we didn’t even have reliable electricity or water. Teachers need to be flexible, resourceful, and prepared to hold sessions outside on the grass with nothing more than the books or handouts they have brought with them. In reality, though, we nearly always manage to have a laptop with projector (so we can show movies), and usually an internet connection is available.

Q: How far in advance do you need my commitment?

We aim to have our staff in place at least two months prior to the camp. That means four committed discussion leaders. About a month before the camp, we will ask for at least partial payment of the camp fees to guarantee your room (as we do for the students).

Q: I want to deduct my contribution from my US tax return. What do I do?

We are registered as a non-profit corporation in the US State of Arizona. We have applied to the US Internal Revenue Service for our 501(c)(3) status.

Q: What is the relationship between LLI and ISIL?

We have worked closely for many years, and share goals of spreading freedom worldwide, but we are separate, independent legal entities.

Q: Is LLI affiliated with any other NGOs?

Although we have no official, formal, or legal affiliation with other American NGOs, our local partners are often from NGOs in their own countries. We also encourage them to seek support from other local and international NGOs to help finance their camp activities, since the student fees charged cover only a relatively small part of the total cost of the camps.

Q: How do I sponsor an individual student?

For individual donors, there are two ways to sponsor students. First, if you know any specific student(s) you would like to send to a camp, contact us for details on pricing, transportation, visas, and payments. Second, you may contribute to our general scholarship fund. We use the money in this fund to help underwrite the camp costs for all students, since the full cost of a camp is always greater than the amount we can recover through direct student fees.

Q: How can I underwrite a shipment of books to students at a camp, or a local partner?

We often try to distribute copies of small but important works such as “The Law”. Arrangements should be made at least three months prior to a camp, to allow time for shipping, customs, and book distribution. Please contact us as early as possible to make the necessary arrangements.

Q: I have abundant airline miles I’d like to use for a teacher’s plane ticket to a camp. How is this handled?

We try to book teachers’ tickets 4-6 weeks before a camp. We would give you the teacher’s travel dates and airports, and you would contact your airline to book the flights.

Q: I’d like to attend a camp, possibly with my family, and see how I can help while I’m there.

We welcome your visit! The more English speakers we have at a camp, the more opportunities students have to practice their conversational skills. Join us for a few hours, a day or two, or the whole week. If you’re already planning a holiday in that part of the world, and would like to meet some bright, young, ambitious local people eager to discuss classical liberal ideas, this is an ideal way to do it. In addition, if you feel motivated to give a talk about your special areas of interest or expertise, we are happy to accommodate that. It will be a truly memorable and special holiday for you. It’s best to arrange everything 6-8 weeks before the camp, so contact us as early as possible so we can work out the details. See our “Voluntourism” web page.