Editor's Note: The Passports with Purpose project was closed by the organizers as of 2017.
Every December, the travel blogging community rallies together around a common cause, Passports with Purpose.
In 2010, we collectively helped to raise over $64,000 to literally build a village in India. Construction is currently underway,
The year before that, it was close to $30,000 to build a school in rural Cambodia (a country that touched my heart immensely when I visited).
This year, our goal is even grander: raise $80,000 to build two libraries in Zambia!
It's easy to take basic education and access to books for granted in the United States. I know I did growing up.
But traveling around the world, seeing how others live, especially those in rural areas and poor neighborhoods, has opened my eyes to the great inequalities that exist.
This year, we all have the chance to make a difference for some kids in Zambia.
And there's no charity organization I trust more with my donation than Passports with Purpose, which is working in conjunction with Room to Read for this year's project.
How to Donate
Passports with Purpose makes it FUN to donate money.
In addition to a few sponsors that get the ball rolling, dozens of travel bloggers have sourced prizes that each donor can bid on in $10 increments.
All the prizes are travel-related, from electronics like the new Kindle Fire to hotel and spa vouchers worth thousands of dollars.
This year, I'm offering a free Premium membership to Travel Blog Success, my online course and community for helping travelers build, promote, and make money from their blogs. For a $10 bid, you have the chance to win a lifetime membership normally worth $129.
In 2010, I donated $100, splitting my 10 bids between an iPad 2 and an $800 voucher for HomeAway, a worldwide apartment rental site and corporate sponsor of Passports with Purpose.
To my surprise, I actually won the voucher!
Just to be crystal clear, I donated $100, and in return received a voucher valued at $800.
A few weeks ago I finally put my voucher to use, which afforded me a one-week stay in a 9th floor luxury apartment in Lima's upscale Miraflores district.
Needless to say, I'll be donating generously again this year!
Of course winning a prize is not guaranteed, however all donors can rest assured that their money will be put to good use.
Donations are being accepted through the end of December 16, 2011 (PST), and prize winners will be notified December 23, 2011.
Regardless of whether your motivation is to win big, or help the kids, I encourage you to donate at least $10. [gbicon]
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