Acquiring a professional skill can take years of effort, and typing up vaccination reports doesn’t exactly make for great travel photos to send back home. So instead, the boom in voluntourism is focused on prepackaged tours offering unskilled volunteers a wide range of exciting activities: weeklong stays looking after children in AIDS orphanages, short trips to Africa to build houses and stints teaching English in isolated parts of South America…
So what? It’s better than your standard vacation, where the only person you “help” is your own fat ass up onto a waterslide, right? Wrong: In most cases, this practice actually hurts the people it’s trying to help.
Let’s say you work in construction. One day, your neighborhood suddenly floods with energetic, iPod-toting young people who joyfully start doing the same job you’re doing, but for free.
This is a really interesting read.