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The VolunTourist™ is a premium Newsletter for the Travel Trade. For those interested in discovering what is happening in the world of VolunTourism™ and seeking emerging practices, general information, and case studies, this is your Source.

Volume 6 Issue 3 Highlights

 

UnXpected

David Clemmons, Publisher/Editor of The VolunTourist, responds to some of your questions and emails. (Additional questions and responses are posted on the VolunTourism.org Blog)

Volume 6, Issue 2 Reader Comments & Other Mail

Dear Maureen,

Thank you for your email.

I am most intrigued by the fact that you are approaching the development of your voluntourism program as a "B-Corporation." This is something that is very appealing to me, personally, as I think it represents the fusion between social enterprise and nonprofit organizations, more so than the Low-profit, Limited Liability Company (L3C). This would be a real breakthrough as I do not think any other voluntourism company is currently registered as a B-Corp. And sharing your experience with others would be a high priority for me - real-time "wisdom & insight" that could be shared with others.

As for partners, I think this will require some research and some due diligence. There are a number of travel agents out there who are very interested in working with entities like the one you are proposing. Facilitating your connection with these folks would be relatively easy. The key, of course, will be making sure that your partners are in alignment with the principles of a B-Corp. In fact, this might be the 'leverage' that you can use to entice potential partners to join you. How many companies/individuals wouldn't want to work with a B-Corp?

Please keep us up-to-date as you project unfolds!

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Dear Mr. Windsor,

Thank you for your email.

There are numerous avenues that you can pursue. But, I would suggest that you start by connecting with Catholic universities and colleges around the world that are already engaged in sending students and alumni on voluntourism trips. Notre Dame comes to mind immediately, as I am personally familiar with some of the programs they have conducted over the years for their alumni, including trips to Haiti.

The Jesuit community is also very, very active in this regard. I believe Fordham University has some 30-plus service-based trips that they offer each year for students. Speaking with a member of their staff, you may be able to discover what programs they are working with globally.

You may also read some of the newsletters and campus-centric publications produced by these educational institutions. Quite often they will include articles discussing the experiences of faculty on students - what they learned, how it impacted them, etc.

This is where I would start. Hope it helps.

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D

Dear Isaac,

Thank you for your email and for taking the time to share information about your organization.

If you are interested in engaging visitors to Ghana in participating in your programs, I would suggest that you begin by finding voluntourism practitioners who already serve Ghana. There are a number of organizations which do so. You can discuss specific projects with them and options for establishing relationships/partnerships in order to fulfill your goals & objectives.

As far as sending residents of Ghana outside of the country, this is something that I am hearing from other organizations in countries around the world. I do not know who currently offers such programs specifically for the people of Ghana. There may be organizations which offer these services, but I am unfamiliar with them. To think that the people of Ghana would organize such experiences through a Canadian, UK, or US-based entity seems less than ideal. Perhaps we can talk about this part of your request in a future blog post to discover if there are operations that could assist you in some way.

I look forward to learning more about your program and wish you great success in connecting with organizations around the world.

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We are volunteer tour operator from Croatia and we like to be listed on your web site. Please check our site www.volunteertravel.eu and let us know the way to be a part of your site offers. regards,

Vlado Juresko
Con Sole, VTO
Preko, Magazin 8
23273, Croatia

Dear Vlado,

Currently, VolunTourism.org does not have a formalized approach to being listed on the website. To date, those entities which are represented on the website have been researched and reviewed based upon criteria we have developed in the ten-plus years I have been focused on voluntourism - usually one entity per quarter makes the website.

Part of our hesitation in creating a formalized application process is that we are still collecting data from potential voluntourists to discover the most feasible approach to including information on voluntourism operators on the website. We are also trying to determine if it would be more useful to create a separate website to focus specifically on voluntourism trips. This is something we are still researching, but hope to have more information for providers and voluntourists on how we plan to approach this in 2011.

For now, I will share your note with readers and we may explore a blog post or article on Croatia as a possible voluntourism destination. Knowing that you have operations there is certainly useful.

Thanks again for your email. I will keep you posted as we make our final determination; as I said, sometime in 2011.

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Dear Hannah,

Thank you for your email.

Sounds like a very interesting project you have organized. Always good to hear about what the folks in Australia are doing in regards to voluntourism.

Doubtless you have connected with Daniela Papi of The PEPY Ride in Cambodia. There may be a way to work with her and her team. Perhaps some of The VolunTourist Newsletter readership will have some ideas on how to help you spread the word on your program as well.

I wish you great success in your endeavor!

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