Think Volunteer

Voluntourism

Voluntourism can be problematic when well-intentioned volunteers engage in short-term, often unskilled activities, leading to potential harm to local communities and perpetuating dependency. They advocate for responsible volunteering practices that prioritize sustainability, cultural sensitivity, and long-term impact for the communities involved. 



Synopsis

> A real problem

> Negative outcomes

> Be prepared

> Our solution

Sri gethuk drone Yogyakarta

A REAL PROBLEM

In the past decade, there has been a significant rise in voluntourism; according to Save the Children every year there are 1.6 million people that go abroad to do volunteer work; it seems a perfect way to combine the luxury of traveling but also feel more connected with a culture and like you are giving back something to the environment you are visiting. However, well-intended volunteering in recent years seems to have had pretty negative outcomes. 

NEGATIVE OUTCOMES

Research has shown that voluntourism can have a negative impact.

WHY WE SAY..

"Do NOT volunteer if you aren't prepared"

  • Cultural understanding

    Volunteers often work in communities with different cultural norms, values, and practices. By preparing themselves, volunteers can gain a better understanding of the local culture, traditions, and etiquette. This knowledge allows volunteers to approach their work with cultural sensitivity, respect local customs, and avoid unintentional offense or misunderstandings.

  • Effective communication

    Preparing for a volunteer experience abroad involves learning basic phrases or the local language, if possible. This can significantly enhance communication with local community members and facilitate meaningful interactions. Effective communication is essential for building trust, establishing relationships, and carrying out volunteer work effectively.

  • Project-specific skills

    Depending on the nature of the volunteer work, specific skills or knowledge may be required. Preparing in advance allows volunteers to acquire or enhance the necessary skills, ensuring they can contribute effectively to the project. For example, medical volunteers may need to refresh their knowledge of basic medical procedures, while teaching volunteers may benefit from understanding different teaching methods or approaches.

  • Understanding local challenges

    Volunteers should familiarize themselves with the social, economic, and environmental challenges faced by the community they will be working in. This understanding helps volunteers to contextualize their work, identify potential areas of impact, and contribute to sustainable solutions that address the real needs of the community.

  • Safety and well-being

    Being prepared includes researching and understanding the local safety and health conditions. Volunteers should educate themselves about any potential risks or health concerns in the destination country, take necessary vaccinations or preventive measures, and know how to access healthcare facilities if needed. This preparation promotes the safety and well-being of volunteers during their stay abroad.

  • Maximizing impact

    By preparing themselves before departure, volunteers can hit the ground running and make a more immediate and meaningful impact. Having a solid foundation of knowledge and skills allows volunteers to be more effective, efficient, and adaptable in their work, ultimately benefiting the local community they are serving.

OUR SOLUTION.

THINK ACADEMY

LEARN LONG TERM

Courses cater to your purpose. Volunteer with children? Receive child-focused training. Backpacking with sustainability in mind? Engage in lessons on sustainable travel. Doing an internship abroad? Learn about the culture. Our materials include educational videos featuring locals, sharing their expertise on their country, culture, and nature. Discover your destination to the fullest!

THINK CHARITY

SHORT TERM IMPACT

Think Charity as a whole is a crowdfunding platform providing knowledge, tools, and financial aid can help address local needs and create a sustainable impact for vulnerable communities abroad. By raising funds at the micro level for these causes, a greater impact can be achieved. The goal of Think Charity is to inspire you, future volunteers, and travelers to initiate their own crowdfunding campaigns and showcase them on the Think Charity platform.

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