Updated: Aug 29, 2019
I’ve discovered something wonderful in my travel research that I need to share. Pack for a Purpose is a non-profit organization that connects travelers with community in need of supplies. By facilitating donations of goods through local accommodation providers, Pack for a Purpose promotes a simple idea:
Travelers can use a small space in their suitcases to positively contribute to the communities they visit. What a fantastic opportunity to give back with little expense!
Most of the time when traveling, we don’t realize the need because we are there to have fun. The reality is that a majority of the communities we visit do not benefit from our stay as much as we do. The bulk of the financial profit will go outside of the area to big company owners who invested in tourism by buying up properties and building lavish hotels and all-inclusive resorts. Now I’m not knocking those guys, they hire locals and many of them have made an effort to be more sustainable, but the truth is most of the profit will follow them home and does not stay local.
For the price of a meal, you can help the children of a village with their educational materials or give pet supplies to local communities in need. Since you’re already traveling to the location, all there is to do is drop off the items at a selected location. Once you’ve delivered the donations, you’ll have extra space in your suitcase for all of your beautiful souvenirs. Pack for a Purpose will also connect you with others who are traveling to areas that you wish to donate to, so you don’t have to wait until you are traveling to donate supplies.
Until the day comes when communities have more say and financial gain within the tourism industry as entrepreneurs and business owners, we can still contribute and make a tangible difference with the proper training and mindset.
From Africa to the Caribbean and everywhere in between, this organization is helping people of the world to make a positive impact. I am so grateful to have these charitable travel options at just a click away. Travel and tourism CAN make the world a better place if we make the choice to set those goals and support the communities we love to explore.