4 Ways to Get Paid to Travel and Volunteer Your Skills

Mark Horoszowski

Mark is the Co-founder of MovingWorlds.org, a global platform connecting people who want to volunteer their expertise with social impact organizations.

Get Paid to Travel and Volunteer

Getting an immersive international experience has never been easier, or as economical.

While the debate about “voluntourism” continues, we find that if you donate your professional skills to organizations in need, you can help solve major problems, and learn a lot in the process. So if you are considering traveling and volunteering your skills but are worried about costs, then these 4 resources can help you fund the experience of a lifetime.

1. Get a Grant

Yes, there really are grants that will help you travel the world. The InterExchange Foundation, and its Christianson Grant, is a great example. This grant provides $2,500 – $10,000 to help people fund their independently organized international volunteer experiences. People who use MovingWorlds to find Experteering opportunities can qualify for this grant if they also meet the grant’s requirements. Watch this video from InterExchange to learn more.

UNESCO also has a grant for travel, and this listing site highlights many other travel grant opportunities.

 

2. Have Your Employer Pay For It

Some companies pay their employees to travel and volunteer, and for good reason. This previous blog post outlines reasons why your boss should give you time off to travel, and pay for it. This article highlights why Corporations are embracing International Skills-Based Volunteering.

In addition to formal volunteering programs, some companies offer sabbaticals. This article rom Meet Plan Go helps explain how you can arrange a sabbatical for yourself.

 

3. Crowdfund Your Travel

While not very popular, there are some interesting people managing inspiring crowdfunding campaigns. Trevolta is the leading site to crowdfund travels, but FunderHut has many campaigns and a good article about how to Travel the World with Crowdfunding. That said, there are some ethical considerations when asking money for your own travels, which this BBC article does a nice job of outlining.

 

4. Find a Hosting Organization That Will Cover Your Expenses

At MovingWorlds.org, we source opportunities that provide volunteering professionals a free place to live, and sometimes small stipends. Indeed, there is an important place for skilled volunteers in global development and organizations are willing to help mitigate costs if you bring the right skills to the table at the right time.

 


 

So if you are considering traveling an volunteering, don’t be discouraged by the short-term costs. The value of an international experience is immeasurable, and with the resources above, it can be very economical. If you have other tips to fund your international travel, let me know in the comments below, or schedule time with me and let’s talk about it.

  • Paula

    Thanks for sharing your tips of getting paid to travel. This is very enlightening! Did you also now that you could get paid to travel and volunteer your opinions by doing paid focus groups market research studies. There are all kinds of studies of market studies that will pay you. Some pay you to share your opinions on different products & services; some pay to hang around with you at the grocery store to analyze you shopping habits; etc. I have participated in several over the years. You should check into this too – it’s another money avenue! Try here: http://focusgroupmagic.com ..there’s some other sources too but I just can’t think of them right now. But that one has a good large database of these types of companies. Great writing ~ All the Best!

  • Jim Myers

    Great information, I had no idea you could get grants for travel. Fantastic. BTW, like Paula I do surveys when I travel. Always some time to kill waiting at the airport, etc, http://www.bigdogsurveys.com is my choice.

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