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A Good Day in the Office

Everyone here in Comhlámh was very excited and proud to read the praise of the Code of Good Practice in a Guardian article yesterday. The article discusses the concerns about the growth in voluntourism and the impact this is having on local host communities. The Guardian note, in relation to developing a set of guidelines for the industry that ‘The highest-regarded set of guidelines, though, is the

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Avoiding The Pitfalls Of Voluntourism.

Pictured above: Comhlámh launched #VolOps at last year’s Irish Aid Fair as a means to find suitable volunteering positions. Travel writer Manchán Magan joined George Hook on his regular Tuesday Travel Slot (20 January, 2015) for a lively discussion on overseas volunteering – just the topic to beat the January blues.  Hilary Minch is our Information and Support Officer and blogged this response to

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How Do We Tackle The Problems of Orphanage Tourism?

Shannette Budhai, Volunteering Quality Project Officer at Comhlámh recently returned from a trip in London organised by Save the Children. It was an honour and a privilege to be invited as a panellist and also as a participant to the ‘Better Volunteering, Better Care’ workshop. The workshop itself aimed to tackle the growing problem of ‘orphanage volunteering’. There have been a series of media

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How Do We Overcome The Pitfalls Of Voluntourism and Encourage A Responsible Approach?

Comhlámh’s training and education office, Roisin Boyle, reflects on some of the pitfalls of voluntourism and how Comhlámh’s work on good practice encourages a responsible approach that focuses on the partnership between the sending agency, the volunteer, and the host community. Voluntourism, tourism (in which travellers do voluntary work to help communities or the environment in the places they are visiting) is currently flourishing

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Does Short Term Unskilled Volunteering Do More Harm Than Good?

Janet Horner attended a recent debate in NUIG about ‘voluntourism’. She argued against the motion ‘This house believes that short term unskilled volunteering in developing countries does more harm than good’. She lost gracefully to a large majority vote in favour of the motion but was encouraged to see so many students eager to engage in this important issue. Here, she shares some of

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