Here’s another type of travel to consider: volunteer trips for families.
I haven’t done this with my family, yet. I know I will when they are older. Some of my favorite bonding memories with my friends are those where we volunteered with an organization for something greater than us. I can’t wait to bond in this type of meaningful way with my kids.
This isn’t something, when the time comes, that I will go into half-heartedly. I imagine hours upon hours of researching the right fit.
In the meantime, I want to do things a little differently with this post.
First, I want to ask if anyone reading this has any experience with a volunteer trip – domestic or international. If so, please leave your thoughts in the comments, or shoot me an email.
Second, here are a list of resources I’ve found online. I will update this list and this post as I learn more about it.
Resources for Family Volunteer Trips
- International Volunteer Program Association: Includes a list of member organizations as well as a lot of information for people interested in volunteering.
- Global Citizens Network: Offers information about volunteer and plans scheduled or custom trips for independent travelers, groups, or families.
- The Great Projects: Provides volunteer projects focused on wildlife around the world.
- Outreach 360: Started in orphanages, but has branched out to include empowering children in poverty-stricken areas.
- Me To We: Focuses on volunteer trips that provide the sustainable community development.
- Give Kids the World: This Orlando-based company helps children with life-threatening illnesses make their wishes come true. Volunteers have to be at least 12 years old.
For more articles about family volunteering
- USA Today lists the 10 Best Family Volunteer Travel Vacations
- New York Times discusses some of the things families should discuss before embarking on a volunteer trip.
On another note
I have loved doing this A-to-Z challenge. It’s been fun writing new posts almost daily, and meeting so many travel bloggers. I can’t believe we’re already at V! Only 4 more (very difficult) letters to go. I’m not ready to stop these daily, themed posts. In the month of May I’m going to write a new post every week-day about an attraction (museum, park, anything) that our family has visited. I’ve wanted to write about these anyway, and this is a good time to do it. If this is something that interests you, please join me! I hope you stick around for those posts – and I’m sure I’ll still check out a lot of your blogs in the future.
A funny thing, my A-to-Z spotlight blog of the day, the Traveling Suitcase, is also going to continue the A-Z challenge in May. Let’s see if we can get a group of travel bloggers doing the same! In the meantime, check out their blog!
We talked about doing this and even looked into it a bit. Unfortunately most of the opportunities we found were really expensive and when we really explored what they were about it all seemed rather commercial. We do lots of local volunteer work when we are not traveling.
Yeah. I remember the first time I heard about volunteering abroad and thought it was a good way to see and do good. But, it can be expensive. I have a long time to research and there are places that I’d probably travel to and look for a volunteer opp locally.
And you’re right… we can always do things locally (which we should absolutely do.)
In the States the whole family was able to volunteer all the time. We loved it. I find it much harder overseas. I like volunteer ops that are very short time-wise as well, especially with kids. One thing you can look into doing is going to an American cementary before or right at Memorial Day. There everyone can help put in the flags and other small things. I think your kids would even love it!
Great idea. Especially since my dad was military.
What a great idea for families. I wish there had been something similar when my girls were younger…I know they would have loved it!
Like you, I’ve enjoyed finding so many travel bloggers. I’m not going to continue posting daily, but I have resolved to write more regularly and set myself mini-challenges. I’ll also be keeping my RSS list going of all the people I’ve met so I’ll look out for your posts.
I plan to continue writing in abc form in May about my recent trip to Spain. Maybe we can connect the two things we’re doing? Years ago when hubby and I camped and hiked alot (when we were younger) we used to hear people talking about program through The National Park System…things like trail rebuilding come to mind.
X marks the spot is what I did last year for my X post, lol. Like minds. Sorry to be late zipping back in, as I was away from my computer…traveling again, so am playing catch up with visits here for the a-z. Going to add you to my blog log so I can visit you easier as we move into May. Got the first post written and scheduled and the 2nd one in my brain. Had hoped/planned to have it written about a week ago. Time time time.