Giving Compass' Take:

• GoPhilanthropic Travel has worked hard to understand and implement responsible service and travel programs for individuals who want to increase their social impact. 

• GoPhilanthropic Travel is considered to be part of the 'voluntourism' industry. What ethical challenges does volunteer-tourism face with regard to humanitarian aid? How is GoPhilanthropic working to amend problems in this industry? Can other organizations follow their model?

• Stanford Social Innovation Review discusses the skill sets needed for high-quality volunteers that want to travel and make an impact. 

Philanthropic travel is the lesser known, lesser understood version of a give-back holiday. This type of travel, often confused with a volunteer vacation, also combines exploring the world and ‘doing something good.’  GoPhilanthropic Travel has over a decade of experience in this very special space and we thought it would be helpful to remove some of the mysticism around the term and share what it means to us.

Despite what may look dead simple (give where there is need), our intention to offer our resources while we explore the world requires careful planning, ample thought and cautious execution.  Our definition of philanthropic travel is: a journey that offers an opportunity for travelers to engage with, learn from and be a partner to people and programs committed to positive change in their communities. These visits allow us to consider the context and challenges involved in ‘development work’ and then make informed philanthropic decisions.

After many years facilitating philanthropic tours across SE Asia, India, Africa and Central America, we have learned some incredibly significant lessons.

We now know that good philanthropic travel, goes well beyond any financial contribution or need for recognition. We now know that despite the best of intentions, we can actually do a great deal of harm when we inject money and influence in a delicate ecosystem that involves regional complexities we couldn’t understand looking from the outside in.

Once we figured out that identifying authentic programs required an immense amount of research and relationship building (not to mention monitoring of funding afterwards), we made an early decision to put GoPhil Travel aside for many years to develop GoPhilanthropic Foundation, a 501c3 grant-making organization devoted to creating the proper processes and systems needed to achieve this.

Read the full article about philanthropic travel from GoPhilanthropic Foundation at Medium.