Traveling for Good in Morocco with GoodTravels

Travel has a way of sneaking up on you, and impacting you for a lifetime. After you’ve seen the major sights of the world and start to journey on the road less traveled, you realize that the world is in need of a lot of support.  You begin to see travel less as a vacation for the self, and more as an opportunity to give back. The mind starts to shift, and as a traveler, you wonder how you can help. For some of us, it starts small by buying local and supporting fair trade and ethically sourced items, or volunteering your time to teach English. However, the urge to travel – and to help – still remains, and that’s where GoodTravels comes in. Arnelle and Joma, the founders of Good Travels, saw that change needed to happen within the travel community. They wanted people to see travel not only as a privilege and a great gift, but an opportunity to give back and let compassion fill the heart.

I was honored to join forces with these game changers to share my passion for beauty and travel. The goal of Good Travels is to empower people to use travel as a tool to educate and build awareness. They use their trips to support various causes and nonprofits that are making a positive change around the world. I was thrilled to be able to travel to Morocco, one of my favorite places, with the intention to help and to learn. When I entered Marrakesh, a place of exceptional beauty, I met a group of twelve amazing women, all committed to elevating conversations about beauty.

I’ve taken several group trips before, but nothing quite like this. It was amazing to experience women from all walks of life, coming together to give back to the world. We explored the Medina, inspired by the brilliant colors and the even more colorful people. It is truly a photographer’s paradise, and it is an adventure to roam the market haggling prices and finding one-of-a-kind pieces.

Our home base was the incredible Peacock Pavillions, where we celebrated, and reflected on, each day of beauty and travel. It was an oasis of inspiration around every corner, and swimming among flower petals was a dream come true.

One of the highlights of the trip was when I led a beauty workshop inspired by Morrocan Beauty with all the girls. I’ve made it my mission to discover the secrets to global beauty. With numerous interviews at the Medina with market owners, and visiting spas like La Domaine Roseario and Riad Zam Zam, I had acquired so many valuable nuggets of beauty inspiration. We learned about all Morrocan ingredients, tea, and the purification of doing a hammam.

Another highlight was the volunteer work we did with Project Soar. Good Travels had partnered with Project Soar for a day to volunteer with their local program for young girls. Project Soar provides education and support to empower teenage girls in the developing world. The program is based off of “The 5 Pillars of Empowerment,” which they defined as each girl having the opportunity to knowing and owning her Value, Voice, Body, Rights and Path. The organization has worked with 400 Moroccan girls to date, and has provided thousands of hours of after-school programming. We are so grateful that they allowed us to observe their beautiful mission, and be inspired by the skills these young girls have as they enter the world full of dreams and aspirations. We shared what we did for a living, and with such a diverse group of backgrounds, all the girls could identify with at least one of us, which was very special.

I was asked to lead the opening meditation and share my own personal vision of inner beauty with the group. As we each held hands, we introduced ourselves, and shared laughter and an empowering word that represented each of us. Tears were shed as we were reminded of the power in our words and belief. Regardless of age and location, our story was one for all. We learned more about the girls’ stories, dreams, and aspirations. I can’t begin to tell you how tears just came to my eyes hearing their dreams, from being a rock star to a journalist. It was like I was seeing myself as a 16-year-old girl again dreaming as far as it could take me. I hugged each one and encouraged them to never give up. These are the travel moments I live for, and one I’ll never forget.

The beauty of travel is in the journey the people that you meet. Traveling with a group wanting to do good for the world is a reminder that the travel industry is on the right path. Being able to see the future of Moroccan young girls with Project Soar and traveling with a purpose was a transformational experience. For Arnelle, it’s all about the social benefit. When I asked her what the social good means to her, I was so excited with Arnelle’s response. She said, “It means working to positively impact and inspire those who are directly (and indirectly) affected by you. It means working for the greater good, and for a purpose that is beneficial to the world and to mankind.”

Check out these amazing pictures by Arnelle Lozada – Founder of GoodTravels.co

#SQUAD UP  The GoodTravels.co Travelers

On our way to Essaouira

Enjoying Argan with a Cooperative 

@Shants_reddy tasting the famous Moroccan Bread

A day exploring the Medina. @MinhBui_ looking stunning with Gold around her

 

Beauty is discovered in every moment. These goddesses radiate it

Special Thank you to Toms who sponsored the GoodTravels.co trip with shoes + @minhbui 

Camel Rides on the Beach ( Joma striking a Pose)

Visit the Good Travels and Project Soar websites to learn more. All Images by @ArnelleLozada Founder of GoodTravels.co

 

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