I loved the news that Travelocity is re-invigorating their commitment to voluntourism, making service travel desirable, and even in some lucky folks’ cases, available and accessible.
The company’s Travel for Good portal is bringing welcome eyeballs to the concept of voluntourism, a travel category that bloggers had been piling on lately, accusing heartfelt service travel seekers of being motivated by wealthy guilt or savior complexes, or just being spoiled rich kids. So misguided, jaded, and wrong—truly frustrating that they don’t recognize what’s going on out there in the real world, where more and more people are making significant differences every day.
With the travel category’s popularity has come the next wave of hucksters trying to rip well meaning folks off or get high fees paid to line their pockets, but that’s not new to the tourism world. I always heartily suggest would-be voluntourists ask lots of questions, talk to previous clients, and have crystal clarity about who initiated the project and why (projects should be generated by the community served, not outside agencies who are not fluent in the nuances of a community’s needs).
The Travel for Good program also brings a web-sticky element of competition into the mix, with a social media contest giving away travel expenses and donations to causes for contest winners.
Go explore. Let your imagination run wild about ways you can help. Enter the contest
and win an amazing voluntourism trip! For just about every cause you can imagine, there is a way to get involved to really help. Every step you make toward creating a more workable world is significant.