A voluntourist help a child with her reading and writing skills at a school in Belize.

What is voluntourism?

Become part of ongoing efforts to support sustainable development while exploring a new country and culture

A combination of volunteering and tourism, voluntourism is a popular form of international travel. You use your time and energy to help others while exploring a different country and culture. At Projects Abroad, we take volunteer tourism a step further.


With us, you won’t just help and explore as a volunteer, you’ll discover what you’re capable of. We provide the gold standard of safety and support, helping you fulfill your potential and create positive change in the world. We believe in long-term, sustainable solutions and working directly with local communities. To help us achieve this, we have the support of passionate volunteers and dedicated, in-country staff


Each of our projects offers a hassle-free experience. You can volunteer abroad or do an international internship. We also offer cultural exchange programmes.

Two voluntourists work together to prevent coastal erosion in Thailand by planting mangroves.

How does volunteer tourism benefit the community?

There are a number of ways that voluntourism can benefit local people:


  • When you contribute to a well-run and sustainable project, you’re helping to implement long-term development. Use your skills, time, and energy to make a difference that will last long after you’ve returned home. By helping a local teacher improve their English and classroom skills through a Teaching Project, you’ll indirectly impact the children they teach. When you help a struggling entrepreneur get their business off the ground at a Microfinance Project, you’re helping support an entire family for years to come.
  • By participating in voluntourism, you’re contributing to the local economy. In their free time, most volunteers go sightseeing, like game drives and island tours. Many developing countries rely heavily on the income from tourism. In this way, voluntourism companies and volunteers support local businesses.
  • Voluntourism companies employ local staff. Projects Abroad employs dedicated, in-country staff wherever we work. We’re not just committed to helping you discover what you’re capable of. We do the same for our staff.


Volunteering tourism is increasingly popular and it’s important to carefully research the organisation you’re considering travelling with. Experience, sustainability, and financial responsibility are essential to running programmes that benefit local people.


Changing individuals and communities is one of our core values. We’re implementing real change through our projects. We plan, monitor, and evaluate all our projects in close consultation with local communities, conducting rigorous impact assessments as standard practice. You can read more about our values and who we are here, as well as our impact.

Voluntourists visit the small business they helped a local man build with the support of Projects Abroad.

Voluntourism Opportunities: More than just volunteering and sightseeing

With volunteering tourism, you’re well placed to make a tangible impact on the people you work and live with. You’ll also learn about the culture and traditions first-hand.


When they’re abroad, most of our volunteers live with local host families. Your host family will welcome you into their home and help you become part of the community. You’ll share their daily lives and learn their customs, which most tourists never experience.


When you choose to join a voluntourism programme, you’re also joining a global network of volunteers. Our volunteers come from all over the world. You’ll find that most of them share your passion for giving back and your desire to broaden your horizons.

Can't find what you're looking for?

We’d be happy to talk about creating a custom project for you. Most of our staff have been volunteers themselves, so they’re well placed to answer your questions, big or small.

01903­ 708 300

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to start planning your project