(This arti­cle may or may not con­tain affil­i­ate links. What does that mean?)

Guest blog post by Jen­nifer Spatz, CEO & Founder of Glob­al Fam­i­ly Travels

The most mem­o­rable fam­i­ly trips are ones that offer expe­ri­ences beyond just relax­ing or spend­ing time togeth­er. A vaca­tion that com­bines a buck­et-list adven­ture with vol­un­teer­ing can be that unfor­get­table trip and a chance to pass your val­ues to your chil­dren. Kids are nat­u­ral­ly ide­al­is­tic and want to make the world a bet­ter place so a vol­un­teer vaca­tion reminds us that we can have fun and make a dif­fer­ence at the same time.

What’s the secret to choos­ing the per­fect vol­un­teer vaca­tion? Find a trip that pro­motes a cause that is mean­ing­ful to you and your kids. That might mean help­ing under­priv­i­leged chil­dren get an edu­ca­tion, lend­ing a hand with a com­mu­ni­ty project, or help­ing to con­serve an endan­gered ani­mal species. Wher­ev­er your inter­ests and pri­or­i­ties lead, there is a fan­tas­tic trip wait­ing for you.

As we head into the hol­i­day sea­son, con­sid­er giv­ing your fam­i­ly the gift of a mean­ing­ful vol­un­teer vacation.

Spend Spring Break Sav­ing African Paint­ed Dogs in Zimbabwe

Painted Dogs © Global Family Travels

Paint­ed Dogs © Glob­al Fam­i­ly Travels

How many kids can say they helped res­cue an endan­gered species on Spring Break? This 10-day Zim­bab­we trip over Spring Break 2019 offers your fam­i­ly the extra­or­di­nary oppor­tu­ni­ty work on a con­ser­va­tion project to save the beau­ti­ful African Paint­ed Dog, one the most vul­ner­a­ble species on the con­ti­nent. This trip also includes wildlife view­ing in the Hwange and Zam­bezi Nation­al Parks and vis­it­ing the nat­ur­al won­ders of Vic­to­ria Falls, the Zam­bezi Riv­er, and Bato­ka Gorge.

Give Under­priv­i­leged Girls an Edu­ca­tion in India

BaaleMane-India © Global Family Travels

Baale­Mane-India © Glob­al Fam­i­ly Travels

There may be noth­ing more reward­ing than the chance to help chil­dren climb out of pover­ty. On this 10-day tour of India, you’ll learn about the impor­tant work of the Kiran Ajali Project, whose mis­sion is to help under­priv­i­leged children—and espe­cial­ly girls—get a good edu­ca­tion in India. This immer­sive, once-in-a-life­time jour­ney will intro­duce your fam­i­ly to an array of exot­ic sights and sounds in this fas­ci­nat­ing coun­try. High­lights include stops in New Del­hi and Agra, includ­ing a vis­it to the majes­tic Taj Mahal.

Lend a Hand on Com­mu­ni­ty Projects in Cos­ta Rica

Horseback riding Arenal-Costa Rica © Global Family Travels

Horse­back Rid­ing Are­nal-Cos­ta Rica © Glob­al Fam­i­ly Travels

Do your kids love to pitch in and make a con­tri­bu­tion? Take them on a 9‑day deep dive into the Cos­ta Rican rain­for­est, where you’ll stay with a local fam­i­ly and work side by side on com­mu­ni­ty projects that pro­mote pos­i­tive change. This incred­i­ble adven­ture bal­ances work with play and includes explor­ing vol­ca­noes, vis­it­ing wildlife reserves, relax­ing at beach­es and lagoons and attend­ing choco­late-mak­ing and pot­tery workshops.

Empow­er School Kids on a Tan­zan­ian Safari

South Africa - CapeTown © Global Family Travels

South Africa — CapeTown © Glob­al Fam­i­ly Travels

Look­ing for a clas­sic wildlife safari expe­ri­ence that also lets your fam­i­ly con­nect with school kids? Our 9‑day fam­i­ly safari in Tan­za­nia not only lets you view giraffes along Lake Natron, spy leop­ards and lions in the Serengeti, and mar­vel at exot­ic birds in the Rift Val­ley. Dur­ing your adven­ture, you’ll vis­it a local Maa­sai vil­lage, meet stu­dents at the Ganako Sec­ondary School, and learn how the Karatu Edu­ca­tion Fund (KEF) is mak­ing a pos­i­tive impact in these schoolkids’ lives.

And great news! For the month of Decem­ber, Glob­al Fam­i­ly Trav­els is offer­ing a spe­cial dis­count on the Gift of Mean­ing­ful Trav­el : Take $250 off per per­son if you book two or more peo­ple on one of Glob­al Fam­i­ly Trav­els trips. Deposit must be made by Decem­ber 31, 2018. That means a fam­i­ly of four can save $1,000 on a trans­for­ma­tive trip of a lifetime!

EDITOR’S NOTE: More oppor­tu­ni­ties for vol­un­teer­ing vaca­tions can be found here and here.