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Educators

Some educators, like Larry Kugler (right), want to take their teaching skills for a road trip, in his case, to South Africa. Others are seeking to expand their knowledge of a particular destination in order to enhance the classroom experience for their students. VolunTourism opens the door to a vast array of possibilities for instructors of all ages, regardless of your students' position on the life-long-learning-continuum!

Photo Courtesy Of The Kugler Family, All Rights Reserved

An Overview

What is VolunTourism?

For educators, VolunTourism is an opportunity to seek experience through service and learning in unique settings around the world. Through a balanced engagement of volunteering and interaction with the destination – its art & culture, geography, history, adventure, and recreation - you are able to expand your own understanding of the interdependence of economic, environmental, and social vitality. By realizing how you can contribute to greater self-reliance of residents and communities across the globe, you will be empowered to share your time, talent, and treasure in newly discovered ways. What’s more, you will then be able to pass your newly-found knowledge and insight to the next generation!

What will be the PRIMARY purpose of your voluntour?

Possible answers to this question include:

  • To acquire continuing education unit(s)
  • Expand your knowledge/understanding
  • Skills development/cross-training
  • Join colleagues from other parts of the world
  • Enhance student curricula/lesson plans
  • Research a topic of interest
  • To engage students in the experience

These are just examples. You will certainly have additional items on your list.

What other questions might you consider? Here are just a few:

HOW can I maximize the return on my involvement for the community/destination and its residents (people, animals, or both), for my students, and for myself?

HOW will I measure and evaluate the success of my trip?

HOW will I document this trip for the purposes of sharing it with students, colleagues, friends, and family?

For additional resources, review the webcasts and articles listed below, or look to archives of The VolunTourist Newsletter, The VolunTourism.org Blog, or The Research Forum with Dr. Nancy McGehee and other sections of this website. Should you have in-depth questions about how to approach VolunTourism as an Educator, feel free to contact us.

THE VOLUNTOURIST WEBCAST - Past Webcasts for Educators

The Kugler Family & VolunTourism - 24 September, 2008

Synopsis

When the Kugler Family - Sara (daughter), Eileen (mother), and Larry (father) - decided to take a family vacation in 2008, they decided to take a voluntour to South Africa. Here is what these three educators had to say during an interview on the subject:

1) What was the impetus behind a Kugler family trip with a primary focus on volunteering?

2) What due diligence did you incorporate into discovering what you felt would be the organization likely to best serve the needs of the local community while supporting you through the process?

3) Having taken a VolunTourism trip now, what do you feel are the most important elements about which a potential voluntourist should be informed prior to departure, during the experience, and after the trip?

Guests addressed these topics and discussed others during this episode of The VolunTourist.

[Listen To The Webcast] (Click Here To Download)

Guests

Sara Kugler, Eileen Kugler, and Larry Kugler, of The Kugler Family.


Suggested Readings From The VolunTourist
Dr. Nancy McGehee, Virginia Tech University

Here Comes The Sun - VolunTourism is shedding light on the potential of travel & tourism in ways never before thought possible. Larry Beck, PhD, a Professor in the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at San Diego State University, delivers personal insights into the convergence of culture, art, history, geography, and service via a recounting of his own recent adventure to Peru.

The VolunTourism.org Research Forum - Dr. Nancy McGehee of Virginia Tech University is our resident expert on VolunTourism Research. She has compiled a series of research papers that have been featured in "The VolunTourist" over the last 4 years. Topics have ranged from motivations behind why VolunTourists travel in this way to how residents are responding to visitors spending time in their communities in order to lend a hand.