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 while building connections to family, traditions and community, both local and global. In the written and video essay portions of your application you will be asked to tell us about what you know about your family's background, as well as of 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 $1,500 (which includes a $300 non-refundable deposit).  The total value of the trip is $4,000 per participant, thus giving you a scholarship worth $2,500, which is funded by the organizers and our individual and corporate sponsors.

Basically everything is covered! Roundtrip airfare and taxes between New York and Budapest; all transportation to/from airports in New York and Budapest; all accommodations while in Hungary; three meals a day while in Hungary; guides in Hungary; transportation in our own van throughout Hungary; all entrance fees to museums and historical sites; the pre-trip online orientation package; and lunch and orientation in New York.

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 for your $300 non-refundable 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?
It 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 and FUNdraising are but a few opportunities.

I'd like to sponsor a participant's trip. Is this possible?
Absolutely! Just download this form and make a donation by check to "RECONNECT HUNGARY" and mail it to: ReConnect Hungary - Hungarian Birthright Program, 120 East 90th Street #5D, New York, NY 10128.

... or make a secure online donation now!

Who are the organizers?
ReConnect Hungary - Hungarian Birthright Program is organized by the Hungarian Human Rights Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization headquartered in New York, established in 1976. The Program is a public-private partnership supported by Hungarian-American and Canadian organizations and the Government of Hungary.

How will participants be selected?
ReConnect Hungary is a unique cultural immersion program. As such, the number of participants per trip is limited to ensure an optimal experience. After meeting eligibility requirements, participants will be selected on a first-come basis and on the strength of their recommendations, essays and interviews. 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 places are taken, additional qualified participants will be given priority for the next trip if they still meet the age requirement.

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 provide us with a valid credit card for your $300 non-refundable deposit. The remaining $1,200 will be due by check. Next, you and the other participants will begin an online orientation course.

What happens after the trip?
Your journey to rediscovering your Hungarian self continues when you return to the U.S. You will be asked to mentor a future participant (it's only fair and fun). You will be assigned to a task force with specific responsibilities, like promotions, sponsorship drive, fundraising, etc. You will be able to stay involved through ReConnect Hungary Alumni meet-ups and events. Studying Hungarian, returning to visit Hungary, studying in Hungary, seeking Hungarian citizenship, volunteering at local Hungarian organizations, forming on-campus Hungarian clubs, and promoting the ReConnect Hungary program itself are but some of the ways our alumni contribute to significantly growing and becoming part of the global Hungarian community.