Volunteering abroad as a family is a form of traveling that has gained popularity in recent years. One of the reasons for this is that it allows families to explore different destinations, have fun as a family, and do fulfilling work which helps underprivileged communities, animals and the environment. This form of travel also has a positive impact on children as they learn perspective, empathy and soft skills such as communication and social skills.
Below, I will discuss the concept of family volunteering. Thereafter, I will discuss the various benefits this form of travel has on families, organisations, and beneficiaries. Finally, I will share the story of the Bruneau family, a family of four who recently volunteered with Globalteer in Cambodia.
Family volunteering simply refers to volunteering together with your family. It is important to note that this volunteer programme is not restricted to biological and legal definitions of family. Instead, the programme is open to two or more persons who consider themselves a family.
As mentioned above, family volunteering has increased in popularity recently. Some of the reasons for this will be discussed below.
Family time: family volunteering allows you to spend time with, and bond with your loved ones in a different environment while giving back to the less fortunate. This strengthens bonds, cultivates understanding and compassion, and creates a shared sense of purpose.
Family volunteering also shifts family roles and creates an environment where all family members work collaboratively on a level playing field. This creates a sense of unity as parents, children and other family members work side-by-side to serve others.
Instills values: family volunteering can teach children skills and instill positive values, values which are important for childhood development. Children can learn from a young age that the world is bigger and more diverse than they could imagine. They can learn firsthand of the problems being faced by millions of people around the world. Additionally, children could learn perspective, empathy, compassion, and respect for others and their cultures. Volunteering also teaches children to be flexible and adaptive, which can be valuable for them in the future.
The benefits of volunteering on children are not limited to the present. They can also have a lasting impact on individual development and future prospects. Volunteer experience can be used to support university applications by showing your child’s commitment to community and social responsibility.
Benefits to organisations and beneficiaries
Family volunteering also benefits organisations and beneficiaries. Organisations such as Globalteer are able to survive due to donations offered by volunteers. This allows us to be able to sustain our various programmes and continue to progress our organisational goals.
Family volunteering does not just benefit one organisation, but the entire NGO sector as a whole. This is because volunteering has been shown to develop a culture of volunteering, especially when started at a young age.
Finally, volunteering is beneficial to the beneficiaries that the organisation aims to help. Volunteers, simply put, provide organisations with more hands to do their work. We are able to help children, animals, and conserve the environment with the help that we get from volunteers.
The Bruneau Family
Recently, the Bruneau family volunteered with Globalteer in Cambodia. The Bruneaus are a family of four who live in Hong Kong. Sebastian, the father, chose to volunteer with Globalteer because it was a fusion of holidays and helping local communities.
The Bruneaus volunteered at the Helping Hands School and offered support to local staff as they held classes. The adults were able to assist staff, and their two daughters were able to interact with, and play with the other children. The Bruneaus, including the children, were also able to help teach the children English at Helping Hands. The children understood the importance of knowing English both at the school and in the wider world.
In addition to assisting at Helping Hands, the Bruneaus also assisted local staff tend to the community garden. This garden is where fruits and vegetables are grown to feed the children a nutritious breakfast and lunch during the week.
Based on the video, all four members of the Bruneau family thoroughly enjoyed their time volunteering with Globalteer. Whether you are interested in environmental conservation, animal welfare, or working with children, we have a suitable volunteer programme for you.