Volunteer travel continues to gain momentum as a trend among aspiring humanitarians, and now represents a significant portion of all tourism worldwide. ‘Voluntourism,’ as it has come to be known, offers well-intentioned individuals the opportunity to work abroad, often through structured programs given by for-profit entities. However, the majority of volunteer travel options offer short-term solutions to complex problems. Not only do they neglect to adequately address the root causes of difficulties, but by failing to provide tools for sustainable, long-term solutions, these programs can act as barriers to actual progress.
MEDTalks strives to create a forum to facilitate discussions and share ideas about how to ensure that sustainability and education remain a priority while volunteering opportunities continue to grow. We believe that it is our responsibility to ask the tough questions about the impact we are truly making: What happens after volunteers leave? How do we know that our initiatives are being upheld? What is the long-term social impact on the community?
In that spirit, we proposed a series of 10 – 20 minute talks, delivered by both students and professors, focused on various aspects of international development.
Interested in giving a talk? Fill out an application here.
Interested in helping during the planning? Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org