In 2005, Ecoteer was founded by an environmental conservationist to provide travelers the opportunities to volunteer abroad. It links up grassroots organizations with volunteer travelers. Ecoteer eliminates the middleman that can sometimes increase the costs of volunteer projects and volunteering abroad. Tune into Peter Greenberg Worldwide this weekend to learn more about this organization, and check back every Wednesday for more voluntourism opportunities.
Ecoteer has volunteering options in ecotourism, conservation, humanitarian work, teaching, research and organic farming. There are more than 200 worldwide volunteer programs to choose from. More than 30 of them are entirely free.
Perhentian Community & Conservation Project promotes ecotourism in Malaysia by increasing environmental and cultural awareness with villagers and tourists. Malaysia is known for its beauty but with increasing tourists, the island has seen a decline in environmental health.
One of the ways volunteers can help is by organizing clubs for local primary school kids to learn English, environmental awareness, and how to snorkel without harming the environment or themselves. Volunteers might also be composting and maintaining herb gardens. On Saturdays they might visit resorts around the island to educate resort guests about turtle conservation and environmental awareness. Community projects include painting houses and murals, and beach clean ups.
Anyone 18 or older can volunteer. Children 14 and older can volunteer with a parent or guardian for a minimum of one week. They can keep volunteering for as long as they want.
If you would like to volunteer with Ecoteer, or for more information, visit their website or email them at email@example.com.
By Judith Retana for PeterGreenberg.com