The Language on our website


In voluntourism there are unequal power relation involved between voluntourism companies and paying volunteers on one side as well as the receiving target groups (placements) on the other side. That is why we see it with concern how most companies advertise their voluntourism products and how many volunteers communicate their trip to their friends and relatives. Many expressions and pictures which are used rather cement racial prejudice, stereotypes and cultural assumptions about other people and groups far beyond the Voluntourism community. These cultural assumptions and prejudice are transferred into practices. Here we can see that language is fundamental to the way we interpret reality and can influence our surroundings and behaviour.

We try to influence this:

   by experimenting with language and wording

   by using expressions and language that is not affiliated with prejudice and power relations.

   by providing platform for discussions (on our website and on facebook)

 

Responsible Volunteering means for us also using our words wisely and carefully to avoid any negative impact through what we write and say. We are trying our best to do it better than most companies and advertising platforms. This is why we hope that you will let us know if we fail to do so! We all interpret meanings and wordings through our unique understanding and hope you join the discussion.

 

We are working on how to express ourselves: Please be welcome to help us with suggestions and hints. Please also check out our glossary.

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About Sebastian Drobner

Sebastian has eight years of experience in international development cooperation, lived in five countries and on three continents. He started to get into the world of development in 2008 when he volunteered for one year in Cambodia for a local Voluntourism project. He then received a contract as an advisor through Bread for the World in Germany and supported the development of the program Volunteer Action for Cambodia by Star Kampuchea until 2012. At the same time he was responsible for the development of the government founded volunteer program Weltwärts of Bread for the World in Cambodia and it`s mentoring.
From 2012 to 2013 he changed into the head office of Bread for the world where he was responsible for the administration of their volunteer program as a program assistant. Now he is studying International Social Work and Development and works part time in development projects. Part of this course was an internship in the Solomon Islands where he worked in a tourism course and developed a volunteer program for Don Bosco Technical Institute Solomon Islands. The knowledge he gained when he finished a three-year training in Hotel and tourism helped during this experience.