Another great article from the latest issue of World Ark magazine. In “Go Away for Good,” Lauren Wilcox explores the rise and ramifications of voluntourism–the combination of tourism and volunteering:
“For those who want to become more engaged in hunger and poverty work, educational travel can be an invaluable tool. ‘Nothing beats face-to-face interaction if you want to learn about an issue, a community or an organization,’ said Nancy McGehee, a sociologist at Virginia Tech who studies volunteer tourism. ‘All the Web surfing, social networking and YouTube videos in the world cannot come close to the actual person-to-person experience.’
“But all education travel and ‘voluntourism’ opportunities are not right for all travelers. Determining how a visit is run, identifying your own goals for the trip and having an idea of what you can expect are all essential to ensure that the experience is a positive one—for the people and the places you are visiting, as well as for you.”
And we’re not the only ones who think it’s a great article. Fox Business cites the World Ark piece in its own article, “The Selfishness of Good Deeds”:
“In the summer issue of World Ark, the magazine of Heifer International, Lauren Wilcox writes about learning- and service-based travel in a piece titled “Go Away for Good.” In it, she quotes Katherine Lu, director of Heifer’s Study Tours.
“ ‘For our Study Tour participants, the real service work of the trip comes after participants return home and begin to make changes in their own lives based on what they have seen and learned,’ Lu says.
Heifer is offering just such an opportunity through our first service-learning study tour to
this September. During this trip, we’ll join with members of the Muhazi Women’s Dairy and Horticulture Project to build zero-grazing pens, as well as experience Heifer projects in action and participate in a Passing On The Gift ceremony. You can learn more about this exciting opportunity here.
Read the entire World Ark article online.