Here at people and places we love this travel writing site. Sallie has just made this contribution
BUT what are we doing to make volunteer travel better?
You know when you have an idea – and you realise it wasn’t such a great idea….and you still don’t let go?
My idea – to write about the positive developments in volunteer travel (call it voluntourism if you must but in my book they are two very different experiences).
Normally I write about bad practice - I thought it would be good to write a good news piece for a change – little did I realise how hard it would be. The only way I have been able to write this piece is with a number of big fat BUTs.
So here we go – and let me start by saying that I firmly believe that a well prepared, screened, skilled volunteer can make a positive impact.
I have spent nearly 10 years campaigning for better experiences for volunteers and the communities they seek to serve. I am not a natural campaigner but I found myself involved in an industry bedevilled by bad practice (that’s a whole other story), so “if not me then who?”
Those ten years have been a real roller-coaster – I have seen the best of people and, boy, have I seen the worst of people. So time to take stock. I have no idea whether any of my campaigning has been effective, but I do know that the campaign has been effective, somewhat…
So I want to celebrate the steps forward (some impressive, some tiny) that I have seen in the past 10 years.
I hate lists but everyone tells me people read lists and I would quite like you to learn more about the steps forward we have taken so …a list it shall be.