Unalakleet, Alaska

July 25-August 15, 2020 | Unalakleet, Alaska


Thank you for your interest in joining Helping Hands International on our next service project to Unalakleet, Alaska!  Below is an overview of the trip, including important information like costs, dates, detailed list of activities and Team Leader information.  Please contact us if you have any questions!

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About Alaska

Unalakleet is a city in Nome Census Area, Alaska, United States, in the western part of the state that dates back to 200-300 B.C.  According to a 2019 census, the population is approximately 704.   Unalakleet is known in the region and around Alaska for its salmon and king crab harvests.  The residents rely heavily on caribou, ptarmigan, oogruk (Bearded Seal), and various salmon species. Unalakleet is also known for its aesthetic value, as it resides right next to the Bering Sea, immediately next to a large, clean river (Unalakleet River) and has trees, tundra, and hills behind it.  Helping Hands International has been serving in this location for about two years, thanks to our partnership with Covenant Bible Camp.  This year we are blessed to have Robin and Jane Espasandin leading the group and will be focusing our efforts on building a home for a specific family (see details below)!

The Story Behind the Project:



“I’d like to introduce you to Doris Ivanoff.  She is a native Elder from the village of Unalakleet, Alaska.  Doris is a 67 year old Inupiaq native who purchased a small HUD home (under 800 square feet) on a 30 year loan.  Recently, she paid that loan off but after owning her home, for only about one year, it burned down to the ground and she unfortunately had no home insurance.  Doris is currently living in a 200 square foot space (that was once a bakery) with her son, plus two grandchildren who live with her part of the time.  This summer, I will be leading a group of volunteers over a three week period to rebuild Doris a home!”


– Robin Espasandin




2020 Team Leaders

Service Project: Unalakleet, Alaska

Robin and Jane Espasandin
Robin and Jane Espasandin

Team Leader, Helping Hands International

Want to Contact Your HHI Team Leader Before Your Trip?

How to Register

Click here for the three step Trip Registration process!
Important Dates:   Application Due – 04/25/20                                                                      Deposit Due –  5/25/20                                                                                Final Payment Due – 6/25/20

Trip Details

Cost: $150 per week, less airfare & Dates: July 25-August 15, 2020

Overview of Activities
A message from our Program Director


This service trip will largely focus on building a home for a family in need.

Typical Schedule
What to Expect

On Your Way to Unalakleet:   If you are flying into Anchorage, AK on your way to Unalakleet, you are encouraged to eat a hearty meal because there is typically only one connecting flight and it may be delayed.  It is also recommended that you either bring a garbage bag to cover your suitcase, or bring waterproof luggage, because all bags will likely sit on the airport tarmac after arrival in Unalakleet.  Finally, we suggest you have rain gear readily available – be prepared for rain.  Once in Unalakleet:  A typical day includes having breakfast around 7:30 a.m., morning devotions and praise around 8 a.m., working on projects until 3 or 5 p.m. in the afternoon, and interacting with local villagers.  See itinerary link below for detailed schedule. 

Lodging & Food
Where We Stay & What We Eat

We stay in town at a local gym and eat regular meals.

How We Get Around

Usually we move around the area in local trucks.  There is also opportunity to walk around the village and local landmarks.

Supply List
What to Bring
  • Bible
  • Bedding: sleeping bag, pillow, alarm clock and ear plugs (if a light sleeper) etc.
  • Bath: bath towel, soap, shampoo, toothbrush and toothpaste, personal items, flip flops for shower etc.
  • Clothes: work clothes, clean clothes for church (nothing fancy), layered clothing (like jackets, sweaters, etc.), work gloves, rain gear etc.  Please note, there is a washer and dryer available as well.
  • Shoes: work boots and/or calf high rubber boots (tennis shoes are ok for the airport and around the village but not so good for fishing, hiking etc.) 
  • Other: fishing gear, camera, flashlight, non-aerosol bug spray, hand sanitizer, water bottle etc.
Health & Safety

Helping Hands International recommends you follow those health and safety recommendations readily published by the CDC and Travel Alert program offered by the US State Department, as well as those recommended by your personal physician.  

Get in Touch

Have general questions or comments you would like to share with Helping  Hands International Staff?  Simply complete this form and an HHI member will contact you shortly!

Helping Hands International

Helping Hands International is a nondenominational Christian Organization dedicated to sending teams throughout the world to bring help and hope to hurting people. Sharing the love of God through practical help is our primary Goal.

Financial Accountability

We adhere to the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA) Standards and are in the process of obtaining membership. For more information on the ECFA “Seven Standards of Responsible Stewardship” Please visit their website at: http://www.ecfa.org .

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