About Us

volunteer and local partner at work

Who are we?

Responsible Volunteering was founded by Natasha Stein, who has a background in the international volunteering sector and travel industry. Natasha worked for the international development charity VSO for 6 years as a Volunteer Placement Adviser. During that time she advised, supported and found placements for over 400 volunteers and set up new guidelines and information for VSO volunteers to help them prepare for their placements. Since leaving VSO, Natasha has been researching, writing articles and blogging about volunteering abroad. She has also been studying part-time for an MSc in Responsible Tourism Management at the International Centre for Responsible Tourism and has written a number of assignments about volunteer travel.

Our Principles

  • Our advice is impartial and honest, based on experience in the industry.
  • We won’t recommend particular organisations offering volunteering opportunities, rather give you the resources to help you choose a responsible volunteering organisation yourself.
  • We won’t base our advice on negative media coverage or sensationalised reports about overseas volunteering placements. We recognise that there are stories of volunteering placements that have gone wrong or had negative impacts but there are also examples of good practice and positive outcomes from volunteering. We will endeavour to highlight the positives and help prospective volunteers avoid the negatives.
  • However, we also recognise that volunteering in a foreign country is challenging and can lead to negative experiences which can’t be avoided and we will therefore offer advice to help you prepare for this.