Emotional Benefits Of Volunteering Abroad

The purpose of volunteering abroad is to provide service to those in need. However, there have been multiple studies that provide insight into how giving back offers numerous emotional benefits that can positively impact the volunteer’s well-being and overall outlook on life. There is arguably a direct correlation between helping others and having an increased sense of self-worth. Here are some emotional benefits of volunteering abroad on a MEDLIFE Service Learning Trip:

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Increased Empathy and Compassion:

Volunteering abroad exposes you to different cultures, backgrounds, and realities. This firsthand experience of witnessing the challenges others face can foster a deep sense of empathy and compassion. Understanding and connecting with people from diverse backgrounds can help you develop a broader perspective and a greater appreciation for the resilience and strength of individuals facing adversity.

Sense of Fulfillment and Purpose:

Engaging in meaningful work through volunteering abroad can provide a profound sense of fulfillment and purpose. Knowing that you are making a difference in the lives of others, even in small ways, can bring immense joy and satisfaction. Contributing to positive change and being part of a larger cause can give you a renewed sense of purpose and a deeper understanding of your values and priorities.

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Personal Growth and Self-Reflection:

Volunteering abroad often involves stepping outside of your comfort zone and confronting new challenges. This can lead to personal growth and self-reflection as you navigate unfamiliar environments, cultures, and working conditions. It provides an opportunity for self-discovery, allowing you to develop resilience, adaptability, and problem-solving skills. Volunteering abroad can also challenge your assumptions and broaden your perspective on the world.

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Enhanced Emotional Resilience:

Volunteering abroad can expose you to emotionally challenging situations, such as witnessing poverty, illness, or social injustice. Through these experiences, you can develop emotional resilience and learn coping mechanisms to navigate difficult emotions. This newfound resilience can benefit you in various aspects of life, allowing you to face challenges with greater strength and adaptability.

Volunteering abroad offers emotional benefits that extend beyond the impact you make on others. It can lead to personal growth, empathy, a sense of fulfillment, and increased gratitude. These emotional benefits can positively shape your worldview and contribute to your overall well-being.

If you are interested in participating in a Service Learning Trip with MEDLIFE in Peru, Ecuador, or Costa Rica, visit our website to learn more about our mission and how you can get involved.


Hear it From MEDLIFErs

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Reya Seby
Western University

This trip motivated me more to pursue a career in the healthcare field so that I can use my resources to help those who need it the most, similar to MEDLIFE’s mission.

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Victoria DiCanio
University of Connecticut

It was most enjoyable to finish the hard work and see how big a difference a group of individuals can make. It was such an amazing experience.

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Anita Woo
University of Toronto

I enjoyed the mobile clinics the most, especially the dental and triage portions. I would definitely recommend a MEDLIFE trip, it was a great experience.

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David Saff
Maclay High School

The most enjoyable part of my trip was hanging out with the amazing group of kids I was with. I would highly recommend a MEDLIFE volunteer trip to others.

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Sydney Sansone
Nova Southeastern University

This trip made everything that I was learning in my public health courses come to life and immersed me in a new culture while also learning about medicine.

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Abygail Youmans
College of Charleston

Being involved with MEDLIFE is not like joining another club - its bigger than that. It is about joining a movement that seeks to help change people’s quality of life for forever.

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Emi Hofmann
University of Central Florida

Not only was I able to participate in a week long Mobile Clinic, shadowing doctors of all types of specialties including pharmacy, dentistry, gynecology, and more, but I was also able to learn about the culture and visit incredible places.

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Julian Takagi-Stewart
University of Toronto

One thing that I really loved about this trip was that MEDLIFE made sure that the volunteers got an understanding of the complexity of issues that lead to underprivileged people in communities outside of the main city

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Hannah Van Hofwegen
University of Ottawa

Whether it was basketball with the local kids, assisting the doctors, talking with families, building washrooms, holding babies, or spending time with the people who were on the SLT with me, this was an amazing opportunity that I would do over and over again.

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Isabelle Holt
Cornell University

I loved learning about the patients MEDLIFE has followed and how they offer real help to people with chronic/urgent conditions. It is amazing how the organization formed real connections with the communities.

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Valerie Lindeborg

Our family had the privilege of participating in multiple trips with Nick [founder] and his amazing staff. Their expertise made the trips unforgettable while instilling in my boys the fundamentals of good character: selflessness, compassion, and empathy.

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Harry Vildibill
University of Georgia

As an aspiring physician, MEDLIFE motivated me to further continue my goal of becoming a doctor. In fact, I enjoyed the Tanzania Service Learning Trip so much that I decided to go on another trip to Cusco, Peru.