A Strongly Worded Letter To People Who Go On Voluntourism Trips

By Victoria Betcham

Dear Voluntourist,

I have some news for you. Don’t be sad, but your trip to Ghana or Guatemala or wherever to help build an orphanage and/or a school for the blind did not actually help the world very much.

You literally paid thousands of dollars to go and spend a few weeks in a third world country so you can feel good about yourself as a human being. It was purely transactional, self-esteem for sale. How fucking sad is that? How bad about yourself do you feel?  You do know that the vast majority of your fees went to the for-profit agency that organized the trip and not to the people in need, right? So many questions.

No, don’t give me excuses like omg I just wanted to help the children. If you actually gave a shit about making the world a better place, what about doing something in your own country or maybe even your own city? Oh wait, that’s right… You don’t actually give a shit.

And that’s fine, we’re all entitled to be our shallow, self-obsessed selves. Just do it openly, don’t fucking pretend to be the next Mother Teresa when you are actually much more comparable to the author of Selfish. It’s not a cute look on you.

Everyone knows that the main reason you went on this trip was for the adorable picture of you surrounded by smiling children in a village somewhere to put as your cover picture on Facebook.

Also, what did you think that you could actually contribute to this country? You are a skinny little white girl with perfectly manicured hands that you would rather not mess up. Does this sound like a good profile for someone who builds things like orphanages and schools? Obviously not. Ideally you should be a strong dude with muscles who can lift shit, fucking duh. There is a reason that you are not pursuing a career as a construction worker.

So betches, stop wasting your money and your vacation time on these dumb trips. If you want to do something good for the world, get involved in your sorority’s philanthropy shit, do some fundraising for organizations working in developing countries, and maybe even do some volunteering in your city.

Doing good shit is obviously cool, but just don’t be fucking stupid.


The Betches




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