Travel may seem all fun, but if you're a true traveller, and making a difference in the areas you've travelled to, is what you're looking at, then we have some interesting offers for you. If you've always wanted to travel AND making a difference, at the same time, here's a list you might want to keep handy.
Nature Lovers, Volunteer At These Places To Live Free Of Cost And Make A Difference
Patrol At Bhimashankar Sanctuary
A joint program between Indian Wildlife Club and the Forest Department, Pune, they require volunteers to contribute at least one week of their time to patrol at Bhimashankar Sanctuary. You will stay with the Forest Guards in forest quarters and don’t expect a butler service here, for it will be a very basic quarter.
Area: Bhimashankar, Tungi
P.S: You will be selected by the officials for it requires you patrolling the forest, which might not be everyone’s cup of tea. You can call them and get in touch to apply.
Volunteer With Sahyadri Nisarg Mitra
SNM gives you a range of options to put your area of expertise to use. Whether you are a film maker who can help them make short films, or someone who can arrange tours, conduct lectures in schools and organise awareness campaigns in villages for their projects on Marine Turtle Conservation and Vulture Conservation- you are all welcome.
Volunteer With WWOOF India
A pan-India initiative that stands for “Working Weekends on Organic Farms”, WWOOF is a network that allows volunteers to live and learn about organic properties and farms across the country. They have a few spots in Maharashtra as well that you can explore.
Area: Haldwani, Nainital
P.S: You’ll need to pay USD 40 (INR 2,500 approx) as membership fee which lets you have access to all their programs across the country.
Volunteer At Sadhana Village
Sadhana Village has been working since 1994 in the villages of Pune district, with communities who have been suffering from perennial vulnerabilities in terms of land holding, incomes, children’s education and employment. They need volunteers for the empowerment of women, rural schooling and more. And you can make that difference.
Help Protect Wildlife With The Satpuda Foundation
Satpuda Foundation works towards protecting the wilderness of central Indian highlands. You can work towards wildlife protection, nature conservation, nature education and more through various activities that you'll get to conduct with your mentor.
Help Save Trees With SayTrees
SayTrees plants saplings and supports them to become trees. They have tree plantation drives all over India, and have been responsible for creating urban as well as rural forests all over India. They also help beautify water bodies and lakes, and they have even helped install solar lamps in villages! Join them to make the country cleaner and greener, people.
P.S: SayTrees also holds the FCRA certificate to receive donation from outside India.
Help The Environment With Sankalp Taru
SankalpTaru works across 17 states in India and helps plant saplings to clean the environment. They also works towards empowering the rural community in the country. The way to volunteer is an interesting one- you can choose a place where you’d like to plant the sapling, they will geotag it for you and you can receive periodic updates on the growth!
P.S: You can also volunteer with them to coordinate operations, plant saplings or even help with marketing and content writing.
Help With Sustainable Tourism With Sikkim Homestay
The government of Sikkim has been working towards promoting sustainable lifestyle in the state. Sikkim Homestays is a non-governmental organization working to establish Sikkim Himalayan homestays with the support from UNESCO. The organization has been developing various homestay destinations in the state by working closely with the locals, thus helping them build their skills to sustain tourism.
P.S: Each village has an individual tourism management committee and you can get in touch with them for volunteering opportunities.
Volunteer To Save Turtles With The Students’ Sea Turtle Conservation Network
This NGO is for those who’re interested in the preservation of wildlife. The Students’ Sea Turtle Conservation Network (SSTCN) is a voluntary student organization that has been working tirelessly towards spreading awareness about the endangered Oliver Ridley Sea Turtles. They conduct walks on the beaches of Chennai and talk about the turtles and how the environment is affecting their population.
P.S: If you’re interested in volunteering for the walks or egg collection or any other opportunity, get in touch with them through their website!
Volunteer At The Spiti Ecosphere
Interested in responsible travel? Check out Spiti Ecosphere in Himachal Pradesh and explore volunteering opportunities with them that will help you understand sustainable tourism. This organization aims to provide sustainable livelihoods to those working with nature. While working with them you will be closely involved in promoting the eco-tourism in the region. Volunteering opportunities include building greenhouses, assisting in daily village activities, office admin work and a lot more.
Area: Kaza, Spiti