14 Years, 20,000 Volunteers and Thousands of Changed Lives
When GVN began only 14 years ago, we had no notion of where our little idea would take us. We wanted to make a difference in the world. And we wanted to build a platform that would enable others to go out into the world and make a difference. I can honestly say that looking back over the last 14 years and remembering all the people, places and projects where GVN volunteers got involved and truly made a difference, really humbles me.
Here at GVN, we believe that when we change one life, we change more than just one life. We could be helping to change a whole family or even a generation. Volunteers really never know how much impact they’re making on the lives of those less fortunate. Let’s say you choose to volunteer in Costa Rica working with orphans or a school. Those kids may remember your visit as long as they live. That’s true impact at its core … being able to give one small child hope that they can move out of the cycle of poverty and into a beautiful world of possibilities.
Hard Work, But Totally Worth It!
The work has been gruelling at times. Making a commitment to change the world never comes easy. We’ve had our share of ups and downs and our volunteers have as well. When you place 20,000 people in various foreign countries working under all types of conditions, you can’t expect everything to go smoothly on every single trip. Yes, there are sometimes problems, but if changing the world was easy, then a lot more people would be doing this job. The fact is that our teams do run into snags, snafus, and situations beyond our control. Though we strive to ensure that everything will go as planned, sometimes things do not unfold as scheduled. We do make every effort to give each volunteer a positive, memorable experience that will forever change the way they view the world.
With a little effort you’ll find dozens of amazing Global Volunteer Network reviews that describe fantastic trips all over the globe where our teams brought much-needed teaching, food, medical care, help with construction, mentoring and above all, love. You’ll discover many glowing GVN reviews where our former volunteers just can’t say enough about what a life-changing experience this is. When you do this kind of work and on this level, there are sure to be one or two people who did not enjoy their experience. We admit that sometimes things can go wrong, in spite of our best intentions. We deplore the idea that someone would call GVN a scam. This is simply not true.
Most GVN reviews tell a bit of the story of how ordinary people who care got involved in one of our programmes. They wound up changing some stranger in a third-world nation, but they will often say that the biggest change came in their attitude about life. Our volunteers always come home tired, a bit ragged around the edges and completely grateful for everything they have. We make every effort to support our volunteers in every way. There is no global volunteer network scam. Just hard-working people who are trying to make a difference.
Be the Change Programme
Be the Change is all about helping our volunteers go out and make that incredible change in someone’s life that could be the difference between life and death. Since we focus on working with “At Risk” women and children around the world, we believe our volunteers can have a profound effect. And they often do.
The Be the Change Conference
We’ve taken this programme a step further and now hold a 7-day Be the Change Conference where attendees can learn valuable skills like how to start a non-profit/charity organisation. We also cover timely topics such as:
- Invent a product or service that could change someone’s life
- Get a job with a non-profit or charity
- Create change at your place of employment
- Learn more about international development and social entrepreneurship
Each year, at our Be the Change Conference, we inspire people to go back home fired up and ready to make a difference in their community. And every community does need volunteers and committed people to help out.
The Youth Ambassador Program
The GVN Foundation Youth Ambassador Program is another gem where we equip young people (15 - 19 year olds) to leave the comforts of home and go out into the world to make a real difference. Our “Agents of Change” attend a 2-day leadership training programme and then they will have an opportunity to travel abroad and work in one of our projects in Costa Rica, Viet Nam, or Uganda. Our teens always have memorable experiences that alter their world-view forever. In addition, they acquire skills that can help them with their future career.
Recognised by CNN and Bill Gates
GVN is proud to have been recognised by such prestigious people as Bill Gates, CNN, Mashable, and Idealist.com. These folks really saw our heart to make a genuine difference in the world. And we hope you will too. When you place almost 20,000 people in foreign countries around the world, it is inevitable that a few people will not have the experience they were hoping for. The good news is that 98% of the time, GVN does accomplish its goals, while our volunteers have a life-changing and memorable experience.
We have achieved a Silver Star status with Guidestar Directory, an organisation that provides unbiased reviews and information about non-profit organisations. In addition, GoOverseas has highlighted GVN’s programmes, including dozens of user reviews. They have given us a 94% approval rating. We believe that if you’ll take an honest look at GVN reviews, you’ll soon realise that we do have an honest heart and desire to change the world. There is no GVN scam and our people are offended by the idea of a Global Volunteer Network scam. We’re hard-working individuals trying to enable needy people, especially vulnerable women and children, to get the food, medical care, housing and education they need to live a better life.
Learn More About Us
If you’d like to learn more about our organisation, please check out this thorough overview of GVN. The article includes more information about the programmes, fundraisers, along with recommendations from CNN, Bill Gates, Mashable and other unbiased reviews. You can also check out the GVN Foundation in this article. The GVN Foundation is the fundraising arm of our organisation and they work tirelessly each year to create innovative new programs to raise money for those who want to go.
GVN is dedicated to its mission and passionate about seeing real change for the future of our world. The organisation members and volunteers feel strongly about these quests to transform planet earth into a beautiful place where each person has enough wholesome food to eat, good medical care and a clean, safe place to live.
Thanks for listening,
Colin Salisbury, Founder and President