frequently asked questions
I don't speak any Hungarian. Am
I eligible for ReConnect Hungary? Will I enjoy it?
Absolutely! The program is designed especially for second, third, fourth (and beyond) generation Hungarian-Americans who do not speak any Hungarian.
My ancestry is only distantly Hungarian,
do I qualify? How do I demonstrate my Hungarian background?
Yes! The program is designed for those who want to rediscover their Hungarian self, all the while building connections to family, traditions and community, both local and global. In the essay portion of your application you'll be asked to tell us about what you know about your family's background as well as your Hungarian experiences so far, if any. This is enough to demonstrate your ancestry.
What is the cost of the program
and what does it cover?
The out-of-pocket cost for you, a selected participant, is only $1,200, including a $250 non-refundable deposit, which is the cost-equivalent of the trans-Atlantic airfare. The total value of the trip is $5,600 per participant and is funded by the organizers, individual and corporate sponsors.
Basically everything is covered! Roundtrip airfare between New York and Budapest; dinner and overnight accommodations during our New York orientation; all transportations to/ from airports in New York and Budapest; all accommodations while in Hungary; three meals a day while in Hungary; transportation in our own van throughout Hungary, all entrance fees to museums, historical sites; and pre-trip online orientation package.
You will need to cover travel to/from New York City and spending money. You will have to arrange your own travel insurance and passport. When you are selected you will be asked to provide us with a valid credit card as a security deposit.
Do you need help covering the cost? Family and friends can give the trip as your birthday, graduation or holiday present. There are also creative ways for you to raise funds for your trip.
I've already been to Hungary, can
I still participate in ReConnect?
Depends. The program is designed for young Americans and Canadians of Hungarian background who have never been to Hungary so that they can rediscover their roots. If you were born in Hungary, but left before age 12, you are eligible for ReConnect. There are ways to get involved and support the program: mentoring, joining us on Facebook, FUNdraising, are but a few opportunities.
I'd like to sponsor a participant's
trip. Is this possible?
Absolutely! Just click here to fill out the form and make a donation by check to "Kossuth Foundation" and mail it to: Kossuth Foundation, ReConnect Hungary - Hungarian Birthright Program, 2001 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W., Washington D.C. 20036. (NOTE: Soon, online donation will also be a possibility.)
Who are the organizers? Are they
ReConnect Hungary is a program of the Washington, D.C.-based Kossuth Foundation, a non-profit cultural organization, and the Balassi Institute of Hungary, the Hungarian government's official cultural institution. The Kossuth Foundation, headquartered on DuPont Circle in Washington, DC is a recognized national community center to promote cultural heritage of Hungarians in America. The Foundation is successor to an organization created by Act of Congress in 1896, signed by U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt in 1907.
How will participants be selected?
Reconnect Hungary is a unique cultural immersion program. As such, the number of participants is limited to twelve per trip to insure an optimum experience. After meeting eligibility requirements, participants will be selected on a first-come first-served basis and on the strength of their recommendations and written essay. Your percentage of Hungarian ancestry is not a factor! Participation in our online training course about the past, present and future of Hungary is mandatory. Once all twelve places are taken, additional qualified participants will be given priority for the 2014 trip if they still meet the age requirement next year.
How can I participate?
You need to apply, take the online orientation course, and go on the trip. To apply, you need to meet the eligibility requirements, fill out an application and submit documents. Once selected, you will be asked to send in your $250 non-refundable deposit. Next, you and the other 11 participants will begin an online orientation course.