Showing posts with label students. Show all posts
Showing posts with label students. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Voluntourism

Young people would be better off travelling the world than taking part in "spurious" overseas gap-year aid projects said Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO).

" Young people want to make a difference but they would be better off travelling and experiencing different cultures, rather than wasting time on projects that have no impact and can leave a big hole in their wallet." - Judith Brodie , Director of VSO


"voluntourism" often cost students thousands of pounds and did nothing to help developing countries. The gap-year industry catered for the needs of participants rather than those they claimed to help . VSO said projects offered to students taking a year off were often badly planned and could have a negative impact on participants and the communities they worked with.

"...we are increasingly concerned about the number of badly planned and supported schemes that are spurious - ultimately benefiting no one apart from the travel companies that organise them," said Judith Brodie.

In June, VSO warned "consumer-driven volunteer tourism" was jeopardising the charity's development work in countries most in need. People were increasingly approaching the organisation about volunteering "as if it was a holiday" .
And last year VSO said gap-year programmes risked becoming "outdated and colonial" by focusing on how UK youngsters could help poor communities, rather than what they could learn from them.

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