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Why do you have to pay to volunteer in another country?

Why do you have to pay to volunteer in another country?

"Yes I am going to volunteer, why do i have to pay?"Many people ask themselves the same question when they consider going on a solidarity trip. We explain the main reasons in 4 key points and debunk the myths about international volunteering!

1. A solidarity trip is training

Volunteering in a Southern country requires training before and during the trip. Beforehand, to understand the social or environmental problems of the country to be visited, in order to get closer to their culture and to get to know the project where they are going to collaborate. This is the only way for the volunteer to get the most out of his or her experience. And during, because the volunteer usually has a coordinator in the project, who welcomes him or her and meets with him or her to guide his or her volunteering.

The training is provided by NGO professionals The time and effort spent is therefore an expense for the local projects and for the platforms that facilitate solidarity travel.

For example, everyone who travels with Tumaini makes a online course on development education, fair trade, sustainable tourism, etc. and in the project they have an local coordinator.

Respecting local cultures is the first step towards sustainable tourism.

2. Solidarity travel is awareness raising, not cooperation.

The aim of a solidarity trip is to bringing other realities closer to people who travel. In their experience, travellers learn, become immersed in the culture of the place and become aware of its social and environmental problems.

In contrast to cooperation, where only people with a technical and specialised profile can participate, solidarity trips are open to all kinds of people. The only requirements are usually language and commitment.

In addition, those who benefit most from a solidarity trip are the travellers themselves, who often return with their own backpacks full of learning. For this reason, it is the people who travel who pay for this experience.

The main objective of a solidarity trip is learning.

3. A solidarity trip makes small projects sustainable

When a person works with an NGO in India or Kenya, for example, he or she usually stays in the same project together with other volunteers. There they share incredible experiences and often lifelong friendships are made. It's part of the magic of solidarity travel.

Thanks to the contribution that volunteers make towards accommodation and food, these small projects can be financed and move forward. In this way, volunteers not only donate their time, but also make a financial contribution to the projects.

On a solidarity trip you live with volunteers from all over the world. 

4. A solidarity trip includes management fees

The price of your solidarity trip includes the management costs of both the local NGO and the platform that facilitates your volunteering:

  • The local NGO: arranges accommodation, often airport pick-ups for volunteers, meals, etc.
  • The platform that facilitates your solidarity journey: looks for the solidarity project that best fits your profile and advises you on travel arrangements.

For example, in Tumaini we have visited and evaluated all projects to ensure that they are reliable and appropriate. In addition, we advise the traveller on arranging vaccinations, visa, insurance, places to visit, etc.

To care for rescued animals in Bolivia, you need a coordinator.

Advantages of solidarity travel

Even if you have to pay, the costs of a solidarity trip are often much lower than those of a conventional trip. Through experience, you make it possible:

  • Your learning about another culture 
  • Your awareness of issues in Southern countries
  • Your positive impact on the project, thanks to your volunteering and financial contribution
  • Sustainable tourism, based on proximity consumption
  • Knowledge of and respect for customs and traditions
  • To meet other volunteers with the same concerns as you.

You can consult the amount to be paid for all the solidarity travel of Tumaini on our website. If you still have any doubts, please do not hesitate to contact us!contact us and we will be happy to solve them!

Tumaini consults with projects about their volunteer needs.


  • Thank you very much for sharing this content. Volunteering is a unique and wonderful experience. Excellent article

  • A very beneficial publication if you have not yet decided whether to volunteer or not. I agree that it is an experience that teaches many things and is also beneficial for those who help. Thank you for sharing.


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