People of all ages and from all walks of life serve on Global Volunteers programs. You’ll find active retirees with a wide range of skills to share; all uniting in a common vision of global possibility.

“So how was your trip?” is a common question friends and family ask volunteers upon their return from a service program. How do you summarize in a few words – or even a few sentences – what waging peace through people-to-people service means? Anticipating this question near the end of his Peru service program, Mike, […]

In this guest post, Ecuador volunteer Gordon Smith takes us along on his step-by-step discovery of service abroad with preschool children and their teachers in our partner community. Secure as a father and grandfather, he knew he’d relate well to small children – even if they spoke a different language from him. In surrendering to […]

Peter enjoys the ride in one of Havana's classic cars, a 1954 Chevy

Alumni volunteer Peter Dykstra stood on the southernmost point of Key West, Florida and imagined he could reach out over 90 miles of water and touch the Cuban coastline. But the country remained a mystery to him while it was “off limits” to Americans. Now, through Global Volunteers, Cuba travel is fully legal and was […]

Septuagenarian Maggie Caison is a retired middle school teacher who, since retiring, finds herself busier than ever. Apart from volunteering internationally with Global Volunteers, she also volunteers with several organizations in her home town of Lenexa, Kansas. “I feel it’s an honor to give a little of what I can. I love teaching and volunteering […]

Global Volunteers Tom and Kathy Kromroy had already served together in the Cook Islands, India and St. Lucia when they decided their “gift” to each other would be to mark their 40th wedding anniversary volunteering in West Virginia. They said the opportunity to reflect on important moments together while they helped youth and adults brought […]

Alumni Karen Isaac had just retired from 30 years of teaching elementary school when she saw “the most amazing photos” of Global Volunteers in St. Lucia posted on Facebook by her friend Gila Cohen-Shaw. A Global Volunteers alumna, Gila has advised other volunteers to “crowdsource” their service program. What has followed is a heart-centered commitment […]

Global Volunteers Alumna Maggi Gallaher said retirement has liberated her to indulge her appetite for volunteering. For her fourth service program, she served at Sagrada Familia, a community in Peru serving 1,400 at-risk children, from one month to 17 years. The community shelters about 600 homeless and abandoned children and provides nutrition, healthcare and education. […]

Returning from a service program can make you itch for more meaningful travel. Deciding where to volunteer next can be challenging, however. But maybe you don’t have to make the decision all over again. LeAnn Plinske and Jennifer O’Neill are alumni who chose to return to where they originally served. Here they share their experience […]

A recent retiree volunteering in Cuba describes the sights, sounds and inspiration she experienced while practicing English conversation with gracious elders and lively students. Mary Ann Fitzgerald says her life was enriched through this unique program, and shares how Global Volunteers enabled her to easily and safely explore Havana, Cuba through service. Florida retiree Mary […]

First-time volunteer Kathy Lafond was motivated to expand her volunteering options once she retired. “It’is time for me to give back to those less fortunate,” said the former IT project manager from VA. She chose St. Lucia for the opportunity to tutor 6- year-olds for two weeks. There, she said she learned more than she […]