Volunteering for change: identifying responsible overseas charity work

Much has been published criticising the phenomenon of ‘voluntourism’, whereby individuals (often students) mix foreign holidays with voluntary work for NGOs. With social media littered with images of westerners hugging young African children, it is easy to appreciate why critics accuse voluntourism of trivialising poverty, treating it as a spectacle, rather than a complex issue […]

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Voluntourism: Who Does it Benefit?

A 2008 study surveyed 300 organizations that market to would-be voluntourists and estimated that 1.6 million people volunteer on vacation, spending around $2 billion annually (Kushmenrmarch, ‘The Voluntourist’s Dilemma’ – 22/03/16). In the past recent years, the phenomenon of voluntourism has indeed become very fashionable in the West, especially among young people (many are gap-year […]

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