There are loads of gap-year options and volunteer programs out there right now. From my experience in the development and management of previous volunteer projects and community based initiatives from 2008 to 2011 in South Africa - The Expedition Project definitely isn’t like anything the country has seen.
The EXPEDITION Project looks to combine five elements to benefit its international team-members: Travel, Reality, Culture, Collaboration and Variety.
1. Travel – Combining travel with volunteering means that as an expedition team-member you will be experiencing, seeing and meeting more people. Although keeping on the move has its disadvantages for the sustainability of community projects, our focus will be on revisiting villages, communities, towns and projects annually. Representatives will be based in each location to oversea certain initiatives.
2. Reality – The EXPEDITION Project is all about the raw facts and cold reality. Nothing can be hidden from what we see, hear and do. We are not looking to sugar-coat anything, nor will we be painting the towns red with false hope and impressions. The EXPEDITION Project is all about learning the facts and dealing with them. Every community member and every team-member, volunteer and online observer will be a part of us – your contribution matters!
3. Culture – World culture is rich and diverse. We aim to combine cultures for learning, educating, experiencing and developing.
4. Variety – Variety is the spice of life and none truer than on how much each expedition experiences, be it for one week or one year. We are guaranteed on being tested, amazed, overwhelmed and ‘wow’d every day! The more we see, the more we learn and the more we learn the more we can do!
5. Collaboration – This is probably the single most important part of every expedition. We rely on the team-work and collaboration of not just our expedition teams but the communities, businesses, government and international supporters. We are not after doing things better or creating competition, we are after collaboration – this is the key!