CALLING ALL GROWN UPS! Listen up, because this article is all about opportunities for you to take a fulfilling break that can also enhance your career. Volunteer work abroad does not have to be reserved only for students or new graduates – there are so many service adventures worldwide, and now it’s your turn.
Career Breaks and Volunteer Vacation Trips
Too often we get so caught up in our jobs and career aspirations – and in keeping up with friends and family obligations – that we forget to take time for ourselves. By taking a volunteer trip abroad, whether it’s for a week or even for a career break, you’ll have the amazing opportunity to make a difference, break out of your 9-5 routine, and have fun.
While shorter trips tend to focus more on tasks that are easier to train volunteers in – like planting trees or painting classrooms – traveling for a month or longer on a career break can be an amazing way to put your hard-earned skills to direct use for a community in need overseas. If you’re a medical or healthcare professional, consider volunteering in a rural clinic. If you’re a social worker or child care provider, there are lots of wonderful volunteer programs where you can lend a hand in a school, daycare, or community center. If you work in IT, project management, marketing, or other business-related services, your assistance as a volunteer can be invaluable to NGOs and community development programs all over the world.
Team Building and Company Volunteer Trips
Looking for an opportunity that won’t cut into your annual leave? Get your business involved and take a group trip! Many volunteer organizations – including a few of the ones featured below – offer corporate volunteer excursions where you can take your team on a volunteer adventure overseas. While volunteering and helping people in need, you can build camaraderie with your team, make a positive impact in an underserved community, and develop skills and tactics that you can bring back to your day job.
From wildlife conservation, to school construction, to teaching English or other subjects, there’s no limit to the amazing volunteer trips that you can take worldwide. If you have reached a point in your career where you want a small break, or if you have decided to just quit your job and start anew, there is an amazing and impactful opportunity waiting for you to jump in.
Ready, set, VOLUNTEER!
Global Vision International (GVI) offers a wide variety of meaningful volunteer and intern abroad programs in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and beyond. More than 24,000 volunteers have signed up with GVI, which offers projects ranging from teaching, to community building, to conservation, to women’s empowerment, and much more. By volunteering with GVI, you will make a difference: this award-winning organization partners with NGOs across many different focus areas to provide the best possible solutions with help from international volunteers.
On this volunteer trip, you will travel to the islands of the Seychelles to earn your PADI Advanced and PADI Coral Reef Research Diver qualification while working alongside marine researchers on conservation initiatives. Most of your time will be spent scuba diving, and you’ll learn to identify fish and coral in the Indian Ocean, learn to survey coral reefs, visit breeding areas for sea turtles, and much more. A few of the project objectives include providing long-term and consistent collection of data to assess the overall health and development of the reef system, increasing scientific output and awareness of the project through publication, increasing in-country capacity by providing environmental education and training, and much more. Click here to sign up!
Another excellent volunteer program you can sign up for right now with GVI invites you to Fiji, where you can take part in a sustainable community development initiative. There are five focus areas on this project, including WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene), health and nutrition, income generation, education enrichment and empowerment, and environmental management and protection. GVI’s Fiji expedition also includes optional side trips, where you can visit world-class dive sites, watch dolphins, or just relax at an island resort. Learn more and register here!