|Location||Caribbean, island in the Caribbean Sea, south of Cuba|
|Language||English, English Patois|
|Religion||Protestant 62.5%, Roman Catholic 2.6%, other or unspecified 14.2%, none 20.9%|
|Climate||Tropical; hot, humid; temperate interior|
|Ethnic Groups||Black 91.2%, Mixed race 6.2%, other or unknown 2.6%|
|Motto||"Out of Many, One People"|
|Group Registration Fee - Not included in participant cost:||
|35+ Hours of Ministry:|
|Safe Drinking Water:|
|Transportation to/from Airport and Ministry Sites:|
|Participation in Local Church Services:|
|Sleeping Accommodations:||Floor-sleeping lodging in a secure church or school in the area||Dorm style with available bunk beds||Hotel accommodations|
|Meals:||Homemade Jamaican and American meals||Homemade Jamaican and American meals||Homemade Jamaican and American meals|
|Recreation or Local Cultural Experience:|
Prior to the trip you will receive a group leader manual, which includes fundraising ideas, online trip handbooks and resources for participants, promotional materials, and unlimited pre-trip consultations with your trip leader.
Once in Jamaica you will receive transportation to and from the airport, transportation to and from ministry sites, three meals a day, safe drinking water, sleeping accommodations, group T-shirts, customizable ministry options, an opportunity to attend local church services, evening worship, prayer, debriefing meetings, and a local sightseeing or recreation activity.
Airfare, passport, vaccinations, spending money, offering at church services, construction and/or ministry materials, personal insurance, and optional recreation.
English is the official language. Patois, the Jamaican creole or language combining English, French and African languages, is also widely spoken. Many Jamaicans are bilingual.
Yes. We take extra precautions and lay down strict ground rules to ensure safety. Crime occurs in Jamaica just like everywhere else, but we have never had a PPM team experience a major incident of crime. Our genuine partnership with pastors and other community leaders in Jamaica ensures there is always someone looking out for the well being of our teams.
Jamaica has no poisonous snakes or spiders... just a lot of goats!
PPM staff will be waiting for you at the airport when you arrive in Jamaica. We will then provide transportation from the airport to the ministry location and back again at the end of the trip.
All transportation within the host country is included in the cost of the trip and will be arranged by PPM. Most often, teams will be riding in buses or smaller buses called coasters.
There are two international airports in Jamaica. One is Montego Bay (MBJ) and the other is Kingston (KIN). Before you register for your mission trip you'll be able to see which airport your team will need to fly into, in order for your team to plan properly. After you register for your trip, your airport destination can be found in your account online. Please be in close communication with Praying Pelican Missions about your flights and please inform us before you book as to your proposed travel plans.
All food and drink provided by PPM during trips is safe for consumption. Tap water is generally safe to drink in Jamaica.
Yes. There will be a time set aside to buy souvenirs if so desired.
Jamaican food is very flavorful and generally made from local resources. A typical Jamaican breakfast may include salt fish and ackee, a native fruit, eggs, pancakes and fruits. A local dinner may feature fried fish or chicken with rice and beans.
No. Praying Pelican Missions will provide all meals from the time you arrive to the time you depart. You may wish to bring snacks, but all main meals will be provided by us.
Please see our general FAQ page for answers to questions not specific to Jamaica
Jamaicans are a group of people with a strong sense of independence. Jamaica is world famous for its reggae music, jerk chicken, and producing some of the world's fastest sprinters. One of Jamaica's greatest problems is integrating tourism with the local culture. Jamaica's large beach resorts employ large numbers of people, but also create an environment of the "haves" vs. the "have nots." Some areas (West and South Coasts) are working to make tourism, the largest industry, a more corporate effort. To the short-term mission participant, Jamaica will appear very developed in some areas (mostly coastal), but it also has many rural areas in addition to grinding poverty in urban areas.
Jamaica is adorned with beautiful sandy beaches on its north and west coasts, while the south and east coasts tumble down from the mountains to the water in the form of marshes and mangroves as well as few dark-colored sand beaches. Peaking at 7,402 feet, the Blue Mountains are famous for rich coffee beans. The mountains dominate any view of the eastern side of the island. The rest of Jamaica consists of rolling hills and flat beaches.
Kingston, the capital of Jamaica, is one of the Caribbean's largest cities. Perched on the edge of the world's seventh largest natural harbor, Kingston's population comprises nearly 1 million people. This is approximately one third of Jamaica's 3 million inhabitants. Other famous cities and locales include Montego Bay, Negril, and Ocho Rios, which are truly the "picture postcards" of Jamaica. While these tourist locations are beautiful, romantic, and tropical, they do not accurately represent everyday life for the vast majority of Jamaicans. The struggle to make a living and create a better tomorrow dominates day-to-day life for most natives.
Jamaica enjoys a subtropical climate throughout the year. The wet season occurs from August through November, raining in brief mid-afternoon showers. The dry season is from December through March. Normal highs year-round range from 85-90 degrees Fahrenheit, while low temperatures are in the 60 to 70 degree range.
English is the official and predominantly spoken language in Jamaica. In addition, the locals have their own dialect and slang use of the language.
All who travel need to take necessary precautions and be reminded to be aware of their environment. Jamaica has its share of crime, but generally it is confined to the urban areas amongst the locals. The Jamaica Tourism Board is continually working to maintain a safe environment for travelers and tourists.
The currency is the Jamaican dollar, which converts at a rate of approximately 109 Jamaican dollars to 1 US dollar. Most places accept US dollars.
Jamaican food is very flavorful and generally made from local resources. A typical Jamaican breakfast may include salt fish and ackee, a native fruit. A local dinner may feature fried fish or chicken with rice and beans. Don't forget to try the world-famous Jamaican Jerk style sauce!
Jamaica plays host to a myriad of activities. The island is blessed with beautiful sand beaches, mountains, waterfalls, and dense jungles. Jamaica hosts more than 3,800 plant species and features more than 100 rivers. The wilderness is never far away! Some of the Caribbean's best shopping is in Jamaica. Open air markets and negotiating a price for an item are commonplace in Jamaica. With a strong local culture and substantial tourism industry, there is always the opportunity to bring a souvenir from Jamaica home with you.
Jamaica was originally settled by the Arawak Indians of South America in the 700s AD. In 1494, Christopher Columbus stopped in Jamaica on his second voyage to the New World. The Spanish were the first to settle in Jamaica while slowly eliminating the Arawaks until the late 1600s, when the English arrived in Jamaica. Near the end of the 1700s, England had begun importing slaves from West Africa. By the end of the century, 20,000 English landowners ruled over 300,000 African slaves on sugar plantations. Lay Pastor Sam "Daddy" Sharpe led the way to abolishing slavery through passive resistance. He became a national hero while ultimately laying down his life for the cause of freedom. Slavery was officially abolished in 1834, though thousands died in the struggle.
Most Jamaicans profess some form of spiritual faith. It is the birthplace of Rastafarianism and its most famous follower, Bob Marley, so many Jamaicans promote "one love." This refers to the belief that we are God and God is us, thus creating "one love." Other prevalent religions include Buddhism, Jehovah's Witness, Voodoo, and African-based Animist beliefs. Christian churches have a significant presence in Jamaica. Protestant churches are more prevalent than Catholic churches by a 10 to 1 ratio, resulting from the English Anglican influence from past centuries.