All set for your volunteering journey abroad?
We know that you are excited to travel to a faraway land and experience the goodness of making a difference to the lives of the underprivileged ones. But before that, we would like to tell you about some important volunteering tips which would be immensely helpful during your endeavor.
You’ll see jaw-dropping sights, meet exciting people from all walks of life, sweat it out at your project site and come back with stories to share with your friends and family. So, how can you miss out clicking those perfect Instagram-worthy shots? Doesn’t matter whether you are using a smartphone or a DSLR camera – the point is to capture the moments and freeze them forever. Years down the lane, you’ll love to look back and scroll through these photographs, reliving your volunteering journey.
“Never forget that you are one of a kind. Never forget that if there weren’t any need for you in all your uniqueness to be on this earth, you wouldn’t be here in the first place. And never forget, no matter how overwhelming life’s challenges and problems seem to be, that one person can make a difference in the world. In fact, it is always because of one person that all the changes that matter in the world come about. So be that one person. ” – R. Buckminster Fuller.
You might feel that you’re making a small contribution, but that can actually make a big impact in someone’s life. Wake up your compassionate soul and set out for a noble cause.
You are not alone in this volunteering journey, and you’ll be accompanied by a number of other volunteers from different parts of the world. Be a part of a multicultural community, share & exchange thoughts and ideas with your fellow volunteers, seek help whenever needed and try to make the most of your time at the project. It’ll also be an opportunity for you to widen your social network, making friends from different walks of life. Working together for a common goal will help you to bond with them and probably, you’ll find your BFF among them.
“If you want happiness for an hour – take a nap.’
If you want happiness for a day – go fishing.
If you want happiness for a year – inherit a fortune.
If you want happiness for a lifetime – help someone else.” – Chinese Proverb.
Being a volunteer, you get the power of adding happiness to someone’s life. Choose to volunteer with children and help them dream, or maybe you can work with underprivileged women so that they can earn a better living. You can also opt to be a part of a conservation project and protect Mother Nature from the adversities caused by the humankind. As a volunteer, you have immense potential to bring a change. Now that you have decided to set sail abroad and volunteer, know that it’s your chance to make a difference in the lives of others.
“Happiness is achieved when you stop waiting for your life to begin and start making the most of the moment you are in.” – Germany Kent.
If there’s something that you’ve always wanted to try but never got the courage to do it, then now is the time to loosen up the chains and scream your lungs out! Jump from that cliff, climb up the mountain, dive into the deep sea, hug an elephant, play with the little ones in a faraway land, walk down the unknown trails and embrace yourself like never before. This time of your life will never be back again, so make sure to do it all!
Ditch those trolleys and travel with your backpack. Stop eating at fancy restaurants, rather hit those tiny shacks. Don’t go on the obvious trails, but explore the hidden gems. During your volunteering journey, spend more time with the locals, get to know their way of life, their culture and traditions, be a part of their festivities and live the way they do!
To quote Andrew Zimmern, “Please be a traveler, not a tourist. Try new things, meet new people, and look beyond what’s right in front of you. Those are the keys to understanding this amazing world we live in.”
In case you are traveling abroad to volunteer, you just can’t afford to miss savoring their authentic flavors. The fun of sitting at a roadside stall in Bangkok to eat Pad Thai noodles, or to dig into a plate of Paella while in Spain would be incomparable to anything else! Make a list of the dishes that you can try in your host country, and make sure you get to tick off everything!
Most of the people would agree with the thought that food is an important part of the journey, especially when one is traveling abroad. The cuisine of a place defines its culture – and you can’t know much about a country until and unless you taste the food.
No, we aren’t telling you to master the language, but knowing the basics of the language that’s widely spoken in your destination will help you to connect better with the community folks. Maybe you can pick up the common words and phrases, like how to greet when you meet someone, say ‘Hello’, ‘Good Morning’ and ‘Thank You’ in their language. With time, you can keep learning more words. If the people find out that you are making an effort to learn their language, they’ll feel happy and convinced that you are there to do good for them.
Also, knowing a foreign language will help you in your career ahead, and boost your Resume.
If you take a while and think, we all have something that makes us feel alive, a passionate pursuit that adds a little extra meaning to life, an activity that gives us a sense of fulfillment, of purpose, of happiness. During your volunteering trip abroad, do things that you’ve always wanted to do – things that you are passionate about.
If you have always wanted learn yoga, then maybe you can travel to India or Bali where you’ll get ample options to do it. For those who are passionate about wildlife photography, you can choose to volunteer for the conservation project in South Africa. Make a meaningful choice and let it help you in turning to a better version of yourself.
If you have anything else in mind, you can drop a comment below and we would love to know your opinions. And in case you wish to know more about our volunteering programs, you can simply mail us at [email protected] and our Program Advisors will get back to you.
Riyanka is a traveler who is keen on exploring different parts of the world. She’s a travel blogger who’s equally passionate about photography. Her quest is to turn all her journeys into beautiful stories. Being a die-hard ‘mountain-aholic‘, her favorite destinations are all around the Himalayas! She can spend days gazing at the snow-capped mountains, binge on Maggi and lemon-honey-ginger tea, and reading Ruskin Bond books.
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