Pack for a Purpose: How to use your vacation to bring needed supplies to local communities

My favorite part of packing for our honeymoon safari in Tanzania were the toys and school supplies for Pack for a Purpose.

When we were planning our honeymoon safari, Courtney — the fantastic African Travel Resource agent who booked our trip for us — let us know about a charitable program called Pack for a Purpose. It’s a program that encourages travelers to Africa (and so many other destinations!) to bring much-needed school supplies with them.

We were really lucky to be able to do this for several reasons: One of our places to stay was Gibb’s Farm, and they’re one of the places that works with Pack for a Purpose. Plus it was our second stop on our trip. Which meant we wouldn’t be taking many vehicles that would force us to have weight limits on our bags. So unlike (perhaps) most people, we didn’t have skimp on the number of items we could bring based on weight.

Our bag on the way to Gibb’s Farm.

Gibb’s Farm provides a long list of the things that their nearby school needs, but I was getting overwhelmed with choices. So Mike suggested that I email them and ask if they know the top items the school REALLY needed. They got back to me and said, “We spoke with the teacher and they suggested pens and pencils, rubbers, sharpeners and a few netballs if you have space. Whatever you can manage to bring will be most appreciated by the school and the children.” So that’s what they got, plus some other items that our friends donated as well.

5 Easy Steps to using Pack for a Purpose

  1. Select your destination.
  2. Find an accommodation or tour company and a project it supports.
  3. Choose the supplies you wish to take from the specific items requested.
  4. Drop off the supplies at the accommodation or tour company.
  5. They will be delivered to the project; it’s that easy!

So if you’re heading to Africa, the Caribbean, Central or South America, Southeast Asia, or any of these places for your next trip, you should definitely add a little charitable action to your plans, and pack for a purpose!

Megan Finley Horowitz

I'm a part-time writer, editor, and full-time eater from Los Angeles. I live with my husband/travel partner, our rescued senior chihuahua and grumpy-ass cat.

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