American Youth Hostels, Inc. HQ

aka Hostelling International USA (HI USA)   |   Silver Spring, MD   |  www.hiusa.org

Mission

American Youth Hostels, dba Hostelling International USA, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to achieving its mission: "To help all, especially the young, gain a greater understanding of the world and its people through hostelling."   Hostelling International USA (HI USA) is founded on an enduring belief in the power of travel to foster a deeper understanding of people, places and the world around. We promote a dynamic community of global citizens who have the wisdom and humanity to actively make the world a better place. We believe in making travel accessible to everyone, giving back to the communities where our hostels reside, and creating truly transformative life experiences for our guests.

Ruling year info

1979

President and CEO

Mr. Russell Hedge

Main address

8455 Colesville Rd., Suite 1225 Suite 1225

Silver Spring, MD 20910 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

13-5639689

NTEE code info

Promotion of International Understanding (Q20)

Low-Cost Temporary Housing (includes Youth Hostels) (L40)

Citizenship Programs, Youth Development (O54)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

HI USA is a non-profit organization founded on an enduring belief in the power of travel to foster a deeper understanding of people, places and the world around.

At its heart, HI USA's mission is about people. We believe that when people connect with those from other countries and cultures through travel, it opens minds and hearts – and creates the hope of a better world, with more tolerance and less fear. Our goal is to create those opportunities and connections and harness the power of travel to meaningfully change the way we see the world, and the way we see others.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Hostels and Hostel Facilitated Programs

For more than 80 years, HI USA has been a leader in enriching the travel experience and creating opportunities for greater intercultural awareness and understanding. Our global vision is that hostelling will foster a dynamic community of travelers with the wisdom and humanity to improve our communities, our country, and our world.

Our hostels are the foundation of our largest, best-known program, and are specially designed to promote conversation and interaction among guests from all over the world. Unlike hotels that deliver privacy, HI USA hostels build community and intercultural awareness– through dormitory-style lodging, self-service communal kitchens and plenty of common room space.

Programming facilitated by staff and trained volunteers include outings, meals, film screening discussions, and walking tours.

HI USA operates our hostels in an environmentally responsible manner and is committed to promoting sustainable travel among our guests, helping travelers to maximize their social impact, while minimizing their environmental impact.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Adolescents

Travel education seminars provide participants with a better understanding of the cultural benefits of travel. While seminars may cover many different logistical topics (packing, transportation, accommodations), all seminars have a foundation in building cultural awareness and sensitivity. Seminars are held in hostels and other venues, such as college campuses, travel stores, community centers, and libraries.

Most recently, HI USA created a series of educational programming to help study abroad students maximize their exchange:
• Enhance Study Abroad offers outbound study abroad students the chance to learn about how to make the most of their time away, which is presented at colleges and universities.
• Study Abroad 101 is led at hostels and invites students to learn about the benefits of study abroad and how hostelling in the U.S. can help them prepare for such an experience.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Adolescents

Explore the World Travel Scholarships aim to make transformative travel experiences more accessible to young people of limited means.

These needs-based scholarships of $2,000 enable international travel experiences with a service or educational component for young people aged 18-30 throughout the U.S. Since 2016, nearly 180 scholarship recipients have traveled to over 50 countries and engaged in an inspiring mix of cultural, educational and humanitarian service projects as part of their trips.

Many of our scholarship recipients are young college students who are traveling outside of the U.S. for the first time and are fulfilling long-held dreams, putting them on a path of self-discovery and greater global understanding. Overall, recipients have returned home from their travels with a profound sense of intercultural appreciation, and a renewed dedication to spreading the word about travel and tolerance at home.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Students

Where we work

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

In 2012, HI USA adopted Vision 2020 which challenges us to become the following by the end of the decade:

1. A leading hostel provider in the world

2. A valued source of experiential learning

3. A widely recognized champion for intercultural understanding

4. An effective advocate for youth travel

5. A vibrant presence in communities across the United States

1. Deepen the hostelling experience by effectively engaging novice and experienced travelers and those passionate about travel.

2. Enrich the hostel stay with mission-focused activities and environmental operational best practices.

3. Empower and mobilize the community of travelers to advance youth travel by developing young community leaders and growing the movement.

4. Grow the hostel network and overnights through increased capacity by using a proactive expansion strategy in developing a diverse array of hostel options.

5. Develop facilitated learning opportunities using experiential learning to provide experiences designed to develop intercultural and global citizenship skills.

In 2014, the 26 local regional councils of Hostelling International USA unified with the national organization, into one stronger, more effective organization.

As a unified organization, HI USA is poised to deliver its programs to more young people across the United States. Combining the talent and dedication of staff and volunteers around the country with fifty hostels across the United States, HI USA has increased its capability to ensure effective mission delivery.

The achievement of unification, which was officially completed on March 31, 2014, was the first step in HI USA having greater mission impact across the United States.

The close of FY17 concluded our third year as a fully-unified organization and signaled our continued momentum. We advanced our education, engagement, and volunteer goals, while being named the #2 hostel network in the world (out of more than 70) based on guest feedback. With new branding outreach and hostel messaging we made huge strides in better promoting our mission.

A few notable recent accomplishments of our mission impact include:

• Receiving recognition as a leader in youth travel education by the United Nations, the UN World Tourism Organization, and other respected global entities.
• Providing safe and affordable accommodations for young travelers, as well as receiving awards for responsible environmental practices and stewardship.
• Offering over 5,800 hostel programs and activities, with nearly 124,000 participants in FY17.
• Increasing our Explore the World travel scholarships to nearly 100 for young people from underserved communities throughout the U.S.
• Expanding our hostel network in destinations that attract young travelers. In October 2017, we broke ground for our new hostel in New Orleans, which involves the rehabilitation of a historic building in the heart of that city.

Financials

American Youth Hostels, Inc.
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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American Youth Hostels, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 2/25/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Ms. Peggy Stevens

Northern Virginia Conservation Trust (Retired)

Eric Oetjen

ICF International

Glenn Azuma

Coniston Consulting

Nicholas Andrade

Schwinn/GT/Mongoose Bicycle Company

Roseanne Landay

TripSketch

Tom Courtney

Walkabout California

Lisa Gurwitch

K.I.D.S./Fashion Delivers

Erin Hamant

City of Santa Monica

Charles Hokanson

Helios Education Foundation

Marcella McCoy-Deh

Philadelphia University

Dean Papademetriou

Boston Housing Authority

Nicole Sandoval

Wells Fargo

Erika Byrnison

92nd Street YM-YWHA

Joe Chesler

L-W Resources, Inc.

Makeba Clay

Innovative Global Solutions Consulting, LLC

Alexandra Escobar

Peace Corps

Peter Jenkel

Marsh

Bruce Marsden

Riverside Research Institute

Cynthia Singer-Riordan

AIC/CIEE Boston