Samaritan Travels

25 Oct

Looking for an exciting vacation that is a little out of the ordinary?  Want to give back to communities and experience different countries and cultures?  Make your next trip a volunteer vacation!

Something for Everyone

Activities range from restoration, preservation, and education, working with children to working in and with wildlife locally and abroad.  These are just a few examples of what volunteer activities are offered, however there are many more options suited for a variety of tastes and interests.  Simply Google your interest with the search terms “volunteer vacation”.  There are many vacations here in the United States, as well as abroad, at varying price points.

Enriching Benefits

Volunteer vacations are a great way to give back to a community while experiencing another part of the world. The experience is mutually beneficial, allowing you to become truly immersed in a culture while creating a sense of connectedness.  Knowing that you are connected to others provides immeasurable health benefitsAside from helping others, the sense of unity creates a sense of satisfaction and well being.  Volunteer Vacations: The Health Benefits of Helping Others explores the health benefits associated with volunteering, and also provides some great jumping off points with some popular programs.

Getting Started

USA Today Travel offers information on finding the right opportunity for you

How Stuff Works provides a brief overview of planning your trip as well as opportunities in Africa, U.S, and Latin America

Independent Traveler helps you identify reputable organizations

Volunteer Guide lists different causes and explores ideas relevant to that cause

Global Volunteers organizes volunteer opportunities for 20 countries

American Hiking Society offers volunteer opportunities while preserving the great outdoors

Sierra Club has vacations mainly in the U.S. for working and exploring in the wilderness

REI offers volunteer vacations in Latin and North America

Free Opportunities

Also check out this Storify story for many more links to opportunities, benefits, and tips

Please share your volunteer experiences in the comments!


4 Responses to “Samaritan Travels”

  1. aaronedmiston October 29, 2012 at 5:44 pm #

    Great article! Growing up in church allowed me to experience a lot of what you said here. The couple of mission trips I went on with my old youth group were a blast. We got to experience the culture and help out the locals. The responses you get from the people you’re helping make it completely worth the trip.

  2. John October 29, 2012 at 6:58 pm #

    This post fits really well with your blog’s premise. In advocating for volunteer vacations, you argue clearly and convincingly that these kinds of trips are a great way to immerse oneself in a different culture in a manner that encourages personal development and social responsibility.

  3. travellinghere February 21, 2013 at 4:15 pm #

    Here is another great blog entry on Volunteering and Travelling that highlights more ethical issues when choosing and opportunity:

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