Honeymooning for Charity: Volunteering
Using your honeymoon travels to assist a charity - by volunteering or carrying out conservation work in a foreign country - will guarantee you a once in a lifetime experience – and one that could make a huge difference to those who desperately need your help.
The opportunities for travelling on volunteering holidays are huge – from wildlife conservation to teaching English in a deprived community.
Planning this type of break for your honeymoon requires a great deal of dedication to the cause – remember your needs should come second to the project that you are involved in, and your trip will most definitely not be the typical kind of hearts and flowers honeymoon experience your bridal magazines will have featured!
Why Volunteer?By volunteering your skills – no matter what they may be – you could make a huge impact in a community or an individual's life. By sharing your expertise, or even just manpower, you could be the person who makes the difference between life and death to some of the world's poorest people.
By using your honeymoon to do this will not only leave you with a great 'feel good' factor, and make for some amazing, lasting memories, but also help raise awareness into the plight of the underprivileged abroad.
But Won't it Be Hard Work?It might be – but it will also be very worthwhile, once-in-a-lifetime hard work! And you would of course get time off to spend together and get in the honeymoon spirit!
Even if you don't think you could commit to working for the whole of your holiday, why not enquire about more 'ethical' trips? Many companies who arrange volunteering breaks also organise 'making a difference' vacations, where your locally owned accommodation and local tour guides benefit directly from your stay.
What Sort of Volunteering Could We Do?
Most travel groups who arrange volunteering trips do so in direct partnership with the communities where they send help, therefore ensuring the right sort of volunteers get placed with the right projects. This means assistance gets to those people who really need it, and the volunteer's skills match the work that needs doing. But in general terms, you and your partner could consider volunteering in the following areas:
- Community projects
- Habitat conservation
- Healthcare volunteering
- Marine conservation
- Rainforest conservation
- Sports coaching volunteering
- Teaching English or other subjects
- Volunteering with children
- Wildlife conservation work
ConsiderationsObviously, you need to be very committed to the idea of volunteering before deciding to spend your honeymoon in this way! If you have never volunteered before, or travelled outside of tourist resorts, then you really need to keep in mind that your week or fortnight away will be a completely different experience to any other holiday you have had! It will not be candlelit dinners on a terrace each night – and even if it is, it will not be like any candlelit dinner you will have ever had before!
If you or your partner have any doubts about whether volunteering is for you, your honeymoon is probably not the best time to test the waters! If however, you are seasoned volunteers – or perhaps you even met volunteering during a gap year or working holiday – what better way to celebrate your marriage and the start of your lives together?