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More Families Interested in Volunteer Travel

Image source:kiwimagonline.com

Voluntourism is becoming much more popular these days, especially among families. Turning the typical family vacation into a family volunteer vacation can have benefits that go well beyond your typical two week stay. When you plan a family volunteer trip, the social impact on your family begins well before you arrive. By choosing a volunteer experience in line with the ages of your children, you can begin to expose them to a lifetime of helping others. Also, by including them as much as possible in the planning stages, you will begin to develop anticipation for the trip in them – often many months in advance. In this way, they will become much more invested, not only in the trip, but also in the opportunity to help others.

Image source:sheknows.com

For the parents, family volunteer trips give them the chance to be good role models. It allows them to demonstrate how unselfishly doing good for others can be rewarding. It also allows them to expose their children two facets of cultures that typically aren’t seen on an ordinary vacation. By getting away from the tourist traps and out into the local culture, you have the opportunity to create memories for your children that may last a lifetime. Also, by getting them started as volunteers at a young age, you can begin to prepare them for a lifetime of doing good for others. Many resorts and nonprofit organizations have developed packages specifically designed to appeal to families. Especially popular with children are trips that involve helping animals.

Image source:jaunted.com

One popular option is sea turtle projects. Not only do the animals fascinate children, but the projects are normally in warm climates with plenty of sun, surf and sand.

For your next family vacation, why not plan a voluntourism vacation? Once you’ve tried it, your family may not want to take any other type of vacation.

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Volunteer travel to be featured in series for public television.

Emmy award-winning production company, Bayside Entertainment, is looking for the very best volunteer trips to be featured in the upcoming public television series, Journeys for Good.

Filmmaking team Steve and Joanie Wynn will travel the world with their 9 year-old son Ryan to profile the very best in voluntourism. Each episode in the initial series will profile the trip, the volunteers, the local people, local projects and non-profit organizations.

The production will be a KQED Presents presentation in partnership with KQED-TV San Francisco, one of the preeminent public television stations in the nation. As KQED says,” “We expect Journeys for Good to be both exciting and touching. Voluntourism is naturally fraught with conflict and yet buoyed by the human spirit and the exotic locales provide a fascinating backdrop for a compelling cast of heroes and underdogs”.

Journeys for Good co-founder Joanie Wynn remarked “Our hope is that Journeys for Good will inspire more voluntourists and spread the word of the amazing range of opportunities that exist for travelers of all ages”.

For details on the search for volunteer travel providers, please click here:

Submission details

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Volunteer with World Vets: International Aid for Animals

World Vets in Japan

Image source: Worldvets.org

No matter what you believe in—Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Republicanism, Scientology, or the Flying Spaghetti Monster—I’m willing to bet that you are probably in favor of animals. You may not support environmental policy. You may have stock in big oil companies. You may even think climate change is a figment of the public imagination. But when you see a puppy’s little face, a kitten’s curled up tail, a pony trotting along with a toddler on its back, you probably feel something good. There are few issues in our lives that are truly bipartisan. We seem to be able to create conflict out of even the most benign problems and yet, most of us can agree that animal cruelty is wrong. Most of us can get behind treating creatures when they’re sick or injured. I think animals really do have the power to bring people together.

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The Ripple Effect: Shannon O’Donnell, Volunteer Superstar, Part Two

Shannon at the Great Wall of China

Image source: Shannon O'Donnell

Welcome back part two of our Ripple Effect interview with Shannon O’Donnell, a travel blogger, speaker, and author of The Volunteer Traveler’s Handbook. She regularly volunteers and in 2011 launched her passion project, a community sourced database of local, sustainable organizations all over the world. She is the founder of the website ALittleAdrift.com and tweets at @ShannonRTW.

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The Ripple Effect: Shannon O’Donnell, Volunteer Superstar, Part One

Xela Guarderia

Image source: Shannon O'Donnell

Welcome back to our interview series, The Ripple Effect. The Ripple Effect explores the emotional impact of volunteer travel and its lasting effect on people’s lives. Today we’re speaking with Shannon O’Donnell, a travel blogger, speaker, and author of The Volunteer Traveler’s Handbook. She regularly volunteers and in 2011 launched her passion project, a community sourced database of local, sustainable organizations all over the world. She is the founder of the website ALittleAdrift.com and tweets at @ShannonRTW. Please check back later this week for part two of our interview with Shannon.

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