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Why your school expedition shouldn't volunteer in an orphanage

The 2017 US Trafficking in Persons Report makes direct link between Nepali orphanages and people trafficking.

The 2017 US Trafficking in Persons Report has recently been released. In it, the report authors make the long needed ackowledgement that trafficking of children into orphanages in Nepal is a form of human trafficking.

The report states:

"Under false promises of education and work opportunities, Nepali parents give their children to brokers who instead take them to frequently unregistered children’s homes in urban locations, where they are forced to pretend to be orphans to garner donations from tourists and volunteers; some of the children are also forced to beg on the street."

So finally it is official - orphanage trafficking is a form of trafficking.

Yet sadly, many volunteers from the UK and other developed nations, including many school expedition groups, still travel to far flung corners of the world to 'help out' and 'give back' at children's homes around the world. It has to stop.

I am part of a working group called 'Better Volunteering Better Care' (BVBC) - made up of individuals from a wide variety of organisations, charities, development agencies and tourism companies.  We aim to improve the standard and ethics of volunteering around the world and, in particular, put an end to short term un-qualified volunteering with vunerable people.

BVBC have put together the following useful infographic to explain the problems with volunteering in orphanages. Please share it and talk about the issues in your schools or travel companies.

If you haven't already done so, you should also read our 'African's, Orphans and Kilts' blog:

Be the change you want to see.