What is Voluntourism?

Voluntourism is the new rage in the tourism industry. Its primary purpose is to serve and learn about the host community and its people. It is particularly favoured by millennials, with the idea of combining both volunteering and tourism seen as an attractive opportunity to not only help but immerse in the local culture. Simply experiencing it gives a more authentic look of the country’s culture and custom than a normal vacation. ​

Why voluntourism?

1. Diverse opportunity

With the right passion and dedication, there are specific opportunities which cater to specific interests. Medical assistance, teaching and conservation are the most searched opportunities, according to a research report released by Go Overseas. Choosing an ideal opportunity not only will lead to a great experience and develop essential skills but also gain a sense of fulfilment and satisfaction for individuals.​

2. Life changing experience

The idea of leaving your comfort zone and travelling to a foreign country might seem scary, but the experience will enhance your personal growth by having a chance to do something you like in a completely new environment.  This is a great chance to discover strengths and weaknesses, a sense of fulfilment and make irreplaceable memories that simply cannot be bought. ​

4. Support the local community

By volunteering in a local community, the aim is to strive to implement long-term development and solutions. Choose companies with partnerships in place with the local community, which encourage sustainability, create employment and other opportunities for local community members.​

5. Make a difference

From building schools in rural communities to wildlife conservation research, by just being there with hands-on experience, you are making a difference. After that opportunity, do share your experience with others and raise your voice in issues that were observed. By doing so, you are raising awareness for others who can’t. This is beneficial for everyone and increases the chances of the impact being long-term.​

Some could argue that voluntourism is doing more harm than good, but with altruistic goals and working with a company with a good reputation, trying to make a difference definitely outweigh the negative.

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