The benefits of volunteering abroad are sometimes indescribable and undefinable. Volunteering shapes a person’s heart, mind, and soul completely. Being given the chance to share your own resources—even simply your own voice and two hands, let alone other capital like money or time—is eye opening, difficult, and most importantly, impactful.
It's an incomparable opportunity to fully release one’s hold on everything familiar. By simply opening your eyes and heart to the culture of a new place, you can have an entirely beneficial, life changing experience.
GoAbroad & Lonely Planet change the life of one lucky international volunteer
Anyone who volunteers abroad will absolutely change their life. GoAbroad so deeply believes in the power of travel to yield self-awareness, compassion, and empathy that we teamed up with Lonely Planet in the fall of 2017 to give away a $2500 volunteer abroad scholarship. The lucky recipient, Kelly Simkins, a student at Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania, is ready for the life changing experience of volunteering abroad. She'll be putting the money towards further cultural exploration and heritage exploring while studying in London this coming year.
We are thrilled to be a part of her story and know she will continue to impact the lives of others through her meaningful travel adventures.
So, how will volunteering abroad actually change your life? You will...
1. Gain a world perspective
Seeing a completely new way of life will help you develop a more well-rounded perspective of the world. By stepping outside the borders of your home country and meeting people from around the world, you will learn how completely different life can be. You will gain an understanding of the problems in the world that exist outside your comfort zone, and have the chance to experience some of them yourself.
2. Realize your blessings
Being exposed to poverty or a lack of resources while volunteering abroad will help you be more thankful for what you have back at home. Witnessing the struggles of others, will help realign your priorities in life, learn what really matters, and gain a more positive outlook on life.
3. Develop new passions
Doing something you may never have the opportunity to do at home could help you find your niche. You can fulfill a lifelong dream to work in an orphanage or build a school. Exploring what the world has to offer will shape your future indefinitely and help your passion grow into a reality.
4. Become more loving through giving
Become a more understanding, compassionate, and empathetic person by giving your time and hard work for the benefit of others. By learning the power of giving, the power of receiving will be diminished. Sharing the struggles and problems of those in need will help you be less judgmental towards others.
5. Experience a different way of life
Fully immersing yourself into alternative ways of thinking, speaking, and living will change the way you think about life as a whole. Learning a new language will expand the possibilities of your future. You will become a more adaptable person and be able to overcome the challenges more easily.
Once you learn these things, once you witness these situations, once you experience these new environments, you cannot turn back time and forget. You will leave your volunteer abroad trip changed forever, your mind shaped by what you learned. You will have completely changed your outlook on life and your future will be entirely revitalized.
Change your life. Volunteer abroad.
Who can say if you'll come back changed for the better—but we'd absolutely bet that you'd come back changed for good. Find volunteer programs and become your best self today.