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Unexpected Moments of Magic Panama is dedicated to empowering individuals worldwide through the encouragement of self-exploration through social entrepreneurship, volunteerism, philanthropy and education as powerful forces for worldwide change. Be the change!

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Summers are just around the corner. Most families plan vacations during this time of the year. People usually prefer beaches, big city excursions and national parks. Although they can be memorable, it is always better to think out-of-the-box. Something unusual can make a huge difference. A family volunteer vacation provides a wide range of opportunities. You can find such experiences in United States as well as foreign countries. The duration varies as per your preferences. You can plan a short vacation for just one week, or go ahead with a long one lasting twelve weeks. Moreover, these vacations are also fun for your children.

Discuss with Your Family - Discuss everything with your family. Try to understand what cause or issue may be important for the members of your family. For instance, your kids may be interested in children's issues like education, environment and health care. On the other hand, you may be interested in something different like rehabilitating houses, preserving national parks and so on. You should find a common ground so that everyone in your family accepts it.

Assess every Member of Your Family - Try to understand your family's needs and personality traits. In order to make sure that you have a fun trip, you need to understand every member of your family and plan a suitable trip. For instance, culturally sensitive members in your family may look for something different from family members who are flexible. Moreover, when you are working for a cause, you need to be serious about it.

Location of the Trip - Location is also another important thing you should consider. Some members of your family may want to stay close to home. On the other hand, some members may want to go far away. Moreover, you should understand everything that would excite your family. It can be anything like constructing homes, cleaning the coastline, reconstructing a historic center and so on. It is important to understand that the choice of location will also take into account the culture, history and significance of your destination.

Duration of Your Trip - It is important to determine the length of your vacation. There are many trips which are available throughout the year. Some of them may also require you to attend training sessions for a specific period of time.

Consider your Budget - Usually, families are responsible for some costs including airfare, food and lodging. The volunteer fee covers: accommodation in the Starfish Volunteer House, daily breakfast, access to all the Volunteer Resources, a Spanish Crash Course, airport pickup, 24hr Emergency Line access, and a personalized Orientation Session. Included in the fee is also a donation to the UMMP Empowerment Fund that is used to support the local partner organizations. Also upon arriving in Panama, you receive 30 days free health coverage.


Understanding the Conditions - It is very important to investigate the details of the project. The work conditions, safety precautions, healthcare, weather conditions and other factors will play a very important role to ensure you have a good trip. You should also confirm the age and fitness requirements. It is always important to work with a cause where the organization considers your safety to be important.

Why should You Choose a Family Volunteer Vacation

Most people think that a family volunteer vacation is just about helping people or communities. However, there is much more to these vacations. Here is a list of the most common benefits :

Strengthening the family bond
Brushing up your skills and improving confidence
Learning about different cultures, regions, communities and their needs
Experiencing empathy, sacrifice, compassion and tolerance
Meeting new people who have a similar mindset

It is true that a family volunteer vacation takes your time, money and energy. However, you also spend all these while on a regular vacation. Family volunteer vacations give you a chance to change the atmosphere and rejuvenate your body, spirit and mind. You are also able to spend some quality time with your family. Such vacations give you a chance to change the world and experience those changes in yourself at the same time.