Guest Article: Travel, Serve, See

March 10, 2010

Today's post comes courtesy of Nicholas Hall, founder of Volunteer to See. You can visit the website at, become a fan on Facebook, and follow him on Twitter at @volunteertosee. Thank you, Nicholas!

At Volunteer to See we aim to change the way people think about their vacations, conventions, and family...

Statistics: Volunteering In The United States, 2009

February 12, 2010

Update: To view 2010 statistics, click here.

The U.S. Department of Labor released its report on volunteering in the United States for FY2009. Highlights include:

  • 63.4 million people, or 26.8% of the total population, volunteered between 09/2008 and 09/2009
  • Of the entire population, 30.1% of women and 21.1% of men volunteered
  • Volunteer rates were highest among 35- to 44-year-olds and 45- to 54-year-olds; rates were...

Five Things Volunteer Abroad Organizations Can Better Clarify

January 07, 2010

In researching volunteer abroad organizations, I’ve run across five things that are important for potential volunteers to know, but that often aren’t mentioned on these groups’ websites.

Where Are They Located?

Nearly half of the organizations I’ve found neglect to list anything more specific than the country in which they work; and about a quarter of the ones I've asked to clarify have responded with "It's not important" or similar.

How is it not important? I for one have never signed up for a volunteer abroad program...

Volunteer Interview: Peru With IVHQ

December 24, 2009

Today's blog entry is courtesy of Dani Scism, who volunteered for five weeks in Peru with International Volunteer Headquarters. You can read more about IVHQ here. Thanks, Dani!

About You

Volunteer Global: In which city do you live? What is something interesting about it?

Dani Scism: Currently I live in Washington, D.C. with my husband and our abnormally hairy child, named Kitty. As we’re all Arizona natives, we’re still adjusting to east coast living and the cold,...

Volunteer Story: Earthwatch Project In Mongolia

December 22, 2009

Today's blog entry comes courtesy of Ruth Fitzpatrick, who volunteered with Earthwatch on a small mammal research project in Mongolia, 2007. You can read more and view her travel pictures here. Thanks, Ruth!

My flights all went well, with no problems in either security or immigrations. I went from Anchorage to Portland to Los Angeles to Seoul (South Korea) to Mongolia, for a total of 21 hours of actual flight time and 10.5 hours of layovers. The return trip was pretty much the...

Guest Article: The Global Citizen Project, By Charyn Pfeuffer

December 21, 2009

Today's blog post is courtesy of Charyn Pfeuffer, who is embarking on the Global Citizen Project, which will take her on 12 volunteer projects in 12 different locations over 12 months. You can read more about it here and donate here. Thanks, Charyn!

 More than a decade ago, I stumbled into a writing career while running the Personals and Promotions department at...

Volunteering To Support Art And Artisans

November 03, 2009

A few days ago, Malcolm Trevina of Meaningful Volunteer sent me a story about Grassroots Uganda, a small group that started with a young woman named Alaisa Nandudu and a bracelet.

"Alaisa had been up all night and making this seed bracelet. I was suitably impressed. Alaisa was living in a small house with her husband, four of her own kids, two HIV orphaned nephews, and a bunch of chickens. Alaisa and her family were eating maybe one...

Connecting With Your Prospective, Current, And Returned Volunteers

October 21, 2009

If you coordinate a volunteer abroad program, you probably know that it’s important to connect volunteers, alumni, and prospective volunteers with one another. It’s essential for marketing to your target audience before, during, and after volunteering abroad.

Here are a few ideas on connecting your volunteers:

Social Networking

Create a fan page on Facebook, organize a group on LinkedIn, make pinboards on Pinterest, and update your new links and programs on Twitter.


I’m separating this out from social media, as some forums are a bit more private and the...

Keeping Fit While Traveling

October 05, 2009

Update! We've made a video about this blog post--watch it here!

While it might be tempting to forego exercise on your travels, it shouldn’t be forgotten. If you’re working on a trail building, construction, or similar project, then you’re in luck—your workout is built in! However, if you’re on a less physically demanding project, then you’ll probably want to put together a workout plan, even if it’s just a few simple routines.


Cardio is the easiest part...

Traveling Abroad: Vaccinations And Medications

October 01, 2009

Update! We've made a neat lil' video about this blog--click here to watch!

Today let’s talk about medicine and travel—how do you get your prescriptions while traveling abroad? And how will you know what vaccines you’ll need before your trip?

Travel Vaccines

If you know you're going to be traveling abroad, especially to a developing country, the first thing to do is to visit your general practitioner or a travel clinic if...