Miss A Columnist

Lisa Beth Miller is the Entertaining & Weddings Editor for Miss A. She has been involved in the wedding industry for several years. Lisa is a bridal consultant and director of marketing and public relations for Blush Bridal Boutique and an event designer at Main Street Weddings, both local wedding businesses. In this capacity, Lisa writes the blog, website copy, and promotional materials for these businesses and assists with event planning. She was formerly a bridal consultant and did marketing and public relations work for A Formal Affair Bridal and Formalwear Boutique and was the creator of their Bridal University workshops. Additionally, Lisa teaches English, journalism, and photojournalism classes at Liberty High School in Bealeton, Virginia. She advises the school's award-winning publications, Talon yearbook and Patriot Press newspaper. As junior class sponsor, she also assists in planning Liberty's prom. Lisa has written several published articles. These include an article about advising student publications for Accents (Southern Interscholastic Press Association’s journal),an article about the royal wedding for Northern Virginia Magazine, an article about local proms for Warrenton Lifestyle magazine, and four stories about wedding planning and wedding fashion for the 2012 Northern Virginia Bridal Guide. Lisa holds an undergraduate degree in English and journalism education from Millersville University of Pennsylvania and a graduate degree in education and library science from Longwood University.

Charity Meets: The Honeymoon

Photo credit: greenbrideguide.com

Photo credit: greenbrideguide.com

Most couples can’t wait to get away for a luxurious trip after the wedding is over. Although relaxation in a new environment is a fabulous option, volunteer vacations are becoming popular options for couples who want to travel and bond over their common goal of helping others.

According to JustGive.org, the opportunities are varied and include both domestic and international options. Here are a few ideas to get you started on planning a romantic trip that gives back!

Domestic Travel

Charity Guide
Browse by category for opportunities to volunteer and make a difference during your vacation.

Habitat for Humanity
They welcome all people to join us as they build simple, decent, affordable, houses in partnership with those in need of adequate shelter. Since 1976, Habitat has built more than 100,000 houses in more than 80 countries, including some 30,000 houses across the United States.

Sierra Club
Sierra Club founder John Muir was convinced that the best way to persuade people to fight to save valuable wild areas was to take them into the wilderness and let them experience for themselves the beauty that needs defending. As a result of this conviction, in 1901 the Sierra Club Outing progam began.

Student Conservation Association
America’s largest and oldest provider of national and community conservation service opportunities, outdoor education and career training for youth. SCA volunteers and interns annually perform more than one million hours of conservation service in national parks, forests, refuges, and urban areas in all 50 states.

Volunteer America
VolunteerAmerica connects individuals, families and groups with volunteer opportunities and volunteer vacations on public lands all across America. Offered by a variety of organizations, volunteer vacations range from trail building and restoring meadows to archaeological digs and whale counting.

Photo credit: sheknows.com

Photo credit: sheknows.com

International Travel 

CARE Corps Abroad
CARE Corps Abroad, in conjunction with partner, Cross-Cultural Solutions (CCS), provides a unique volunteer travel opportunity for just about anyone interested in educational travel or working abroad.

Cross Cultural Solution
Cross-Cultural Solutions is a nonprofit organization that sends volunteers abroad to provide humanitarian assistance with their Volunteer Work Programs in China, Ghana, India, Peru, and Russia.

EarthWatch Expeditions
Earthwatch Institute is the world’s oldest, largest, and most respected organization directly involving the public in scientific field research. This year, Earthwatch will support more than 130 expeditions in 45 countries, and will send some 4,000 members of the public into the field to work side-by-side with leading scientists. These teams of volunteers will collect data under the scientists’ direction and work as full-fledged expedition members, sharing the costs of the research among them.

Explorations in Travel
Explorations in Travel provides volunteer work placements for students and adults from all over the world. People looking to spend an extended amount of time in an area, working on a foreign language, developing or using skills that will help in future employment, or who just want a new, challenging experience, will find a volunteer placement an invaluable opportunity.

Globe Aware
Globe Aware, a nonprofit organization, currently offers volunteer vacations in Peru, Costa Rica, Thailand, Cuba, Nepal, Brazil, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam. These short-term adventures in service focus on cultural-awareness and sustainability.

Global Citizens
Global Citizens Network seeks to create a network of people who are committed to the shared values of peace, justice, tolerance, cross-cultural understanding and global cooperation, to the preservation of indigenous cultures, traditions and ecologies, and to the enhancement of the quality of life around the world. They have many opportunities around the country and the world where you can help and learn.

Global Volunteers
At the request of local leaders and indigenous host organizations, Global Volunteers sends teams of volunteers to live and work with local people on human and economic development projects identified by the community as important to its long-term development.

Oceanic Society Expeditions
Oceanic Society Expeditions serves over 5,000 individuals annually through international natural history journeys, participatory research expeditions and California whale watching trips. The Expeditions programs offer opportunities for the public to enjoy and learn about wildlife and natural habitats or to assist scientists with field research.

Peacework arranges international volunteer service projects around the world for colleges, universities, and service organizations. Volunteers help meet the critical needs of marginalized communities in developing areas by working with host organizations on existing self-development projects.

Volunteers for Peace
Services include providing consultation and a placement service for workcamp hosts and volunteers, linking people with programs. Programs foster international education, voluntary service, and friendship. In the last 20 years, they have exchanged over 20,000 volunteers in international workcamps world-wide.

WLS International
Volunteer in China and Vietnam. WLS International offers volunteer opportunities in China and Vietnam. They have volunteer work available in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and in Beijing, China.

Find more resources in these comprehensive books about Volunteer Vacations:
Free Vacations & Bargain Adventures in the USA
Volunteer Vacations

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