Traveling always feels like an escape, a vacation, a time away from the daily clamor of life. We try to enjoy a break away from our daily routine and experience experiences that can reinvigorate our soul. Some people travel for leisure.
While this kind of travel entails challenges like budgeting, figuring out how to go to a place, where to stay, what to eat, etc., a different emerging kind of travel will give you more than that – travel volunteering.
Travel Volunteering is when you sign up with an organization that links you to different communities where you can volunteer. Food and accommodation usually come with arrangements. Since this is a different kind of travel experience that allows you to immerse yourself with diverse communities. That being said, it also comes with different challenges.
We’ll brief you through the six most common challenges travel volunteers experience and offer a possible solution on how to overcome it.
Losing Self Confidence
Unlike ordinary travel, travel volunteering requires a particular set of skills that will enable you to fulfill the volunteer work you wish to impart. It can be challenging, especially when you feel like you’re falling short with the skills.
To overcome that, learn to nurture positive thinking, active participation, and self-confidence throughout the program. Tasks can be tough, but the organization and the community will be there to help you. Just keep yourself open, be teachable, and you’ll eventually learn the ropes.
Since most volunteer work is done in remote areas, there is a strong possibility of limited internet connection or no connection at all. If you are a volunteer who is used to connecting to the world through the internet, it might be foreign for you to live a day without using one. You won’t be able to contact your friends or share your experiences with your family. This could lead to being homesick.
If it is any consolation, you’ll have to know that this is normal. To overcome this, think that you are part of a team and a family is welcoming you to their home. These people can be your home away from home.
Connecting with New People
It might take a while before you finally warm up with the new community you are immersed in. Take your time to adjust but always be open to letting these new people enter your life.
Since most of the travel excursions already come with food and accommodation, you only have to worry about your expenses. In order for you to overcome the fear of running low on cash, you have to make sure that you monitor its availability from time to time. Do not spend more than what you have and learn to live within your means.
Some volunteers fear for their safety when it comes to health, travel processes, or domestic security. This is normal even for leisure travel. In order to overcome this fear, make sure that you partner with an organization that prioritizes safety.
Adjusting to the New Environment
Aside from the emotional adjustment, you might also fear physical adjustment with the new environment. For instance, the weather – it might be too cold back in your hometown, and it will be extremely hot from where you are volunteering. You’ll have to be accustomed to their food, with their air, with their environment.
To overcome this, give yourself a few days to become accustomed to this new environment. Just remember that it is part of your excursion and you don’t have to be bothered if it will take you a few days to adjust.
Travel Volunteering is an emerging trend when it comes to traveling. It’s normal to have fear and to fear the challenges, but the only way to make this experience meaningful is when you conquer them. So feel the fear, overcome it, and be fulfilled.