What is an international volunteer service trip like with Bridges?
The Bridges to Community volunteer experience is unlike almost anything else you can experience—it will challenge you, surprise you, inspire you, and change you. In one week, you will make a real and lasting difference for an individual, a family, even a whole community in an impoverished part of the world. But what comes as the biggest surprise to so many of our volunteers is that when you return, you will find that those seven days made a real and lasting difference for you as well. And your world will never be the same again.
How Does it Work?
You can organize your own trip, and invite your coworkers, friends, family, classmates, fellow religious congregation members, and more.
We also offer options for individuals who want to sign up for an already scheduled trip. Here are some of the special trips we offer for individuals:
- Summer Edition trips for high schoolers
- Alternative Break trips for college students
- Fair Trade Trips for adults of any age interested in coffee, chocolate, and fair trade
- Bricks and Birds, for adult women, focusing on smaller construction projects, conservation, and forming relationships.
- Birds and Beans, for adults to explore how well planned agroforestry increases economic opportunities for local farmers while fulfilling international conservation efforts.
- You can see a list of all available upcoming trips here.
Who Goes On Bridges Trips?
We send over 800 volunteers each year to Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. The volunteers are a diverse group of individuals, ranging from college and high school students, to members of faith-based organizations, from business leaders and executives, to families and friends. They also include groups of medical students and health care practitioners.
Our volunteers’ ages range from 15 to over 70 years. Nearly half of our volunteers have traveled with Bridges more than once.
What Will My Trip Be Like?
Our volunteers live in rural areas in dormitory style housing, eat local foods, and work side by side with people from the communities that they are helping. There are few outside world intrusions such as cell phones or computers. After a day of working on a project, volunteers might play soccer with local children, read, play games or just relax and reflect on the experience. The trip will also include time to experience the history and culture of the destination country.
The projects that a volunteer might be involved with include building a home, a school, a library, a health clinic, or a tank for clean drinking water. All of our projects offer the satisfaction of impacting the health, well being and future of a child, a family, or an entire community. Volunteers will return home with a new perspective on life and the world.
How Do I Get Started?
The Bridges’ staff is ready and able to take you through the entire planning process and escort you through your trip. We can help you schedule trip dates, make travel arrangements, raise funds, meet your group at the airport, take you to the project site, orient you, translate, and take you out to tour and explore the country.
More information is available below. You can always contact us with questions at 914.923.2300 and email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Ready to go?