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It's Donation Season: Consider These Travel-Related Charities | Frommer's Scott Biales DitchTheMap / Shutterstock

It's Donation Season: Consider These Travel-Related Charities

If you're looking to make a difference right now, these trusted organizations rely on donations to do their good work.

All Wheels Up

This nonprofit gives away harnesses and slings designed to make air travel more accessible for those with reduced mobility. Read more about the group's work in a recent Frommer's feature.

Choose Love

For many of us, crossing international borders is as simple as buying a plane ticket and showing a passport. But across the globe, a huge segment of humankind is in a refugee crisis. At Choose Love, you can use a menu to pick where you want your donation to go, from reuniting families that have been separated by borders to funding job training to providing food and health care.

Doctors Without Borders / Médecins Sans Frontières

This group, which travels to provide essential medical care where it’s not readily available, already had its hands full before Covid-19. Now the NGO is stretching even further and racing against the clock to mitigate the severe disruptions the pandemic has had on essential health services.

Elephant Nature Park

There are only about 30,000 Asian elephants left, which is less than 10% of the number of surviving African elephants, which are also endangered. Elephant Nature Park (pictured above), near Chiang Mai, Thailand, is a sanctuary for Asian elephants, including ones that have been rescued from abusive tourism practices.

Global Volunteers

If you don’t have the budget to make a big financial contribution, you can still help by donating your time. Global Volunteers, one of the oldest programs of its kind, plays matchmaker between international programs and manpower. It also accepts donations.

Tourism Cares

This group works with local travel and tourism businesses to teach them how to operate with a “positive social, environmental, and economic impact” that can sustain destinations for years to come. Tourism Concern, which led the field for 30 years, closed down in 2018 for lack of funds, but Tourism Cares has a high score for financial accountability from the watchdog group Charity Navigator—which, by the way, is an excellent source to help you evaluate the trustworthiness of charities of every stripe.

Wild Is Life

This not-for-profit sanctuary outside Harare rescues, rehabilitates, and releases orphaned animals ranging from elephants to rare pangolins. It relies almost entirely on donations due to endemic corruption by the local government of Zimbabwe. The collapse of tourism in that country has made it extremely difficult for the group to maintain its mission. The group also maintains a farm on the property that supports local families.