Adventures in Kindness offers travel itineraries with heartKathleen Scott, founder of Adventures in Kindness. Photo provided to Decaturish
By Gabriel Owens, contributor
People looking for a vacation with an opportunity to volunteer and help other people, take note.
Kathleen Scott, an IT project manager by day and a travel planner by night, created Adventures in Kindness with the idea of combining service and travel.
According to the company’s website, Adventures in Kindness will “combine your travel wish list with age-appropriate service experiences and culturally immersive travel to help you create memories to last a lifetime. Unplug, reconnect, and relax. We’ll take care of all the details while you simply enjoy your trip!”
All Adventures in Kindness trips have common elements, Scott said.
“[Trips are a] culturally immersive experience, including food unique to the region, an age appropriate service component, and a truly restorative vacation,” Scott said. “We’re partnering with a local non-profit on an upcoming trip package to Costa Rica. It’s a 10-day adventure to a small fishing village called Pavones near the Costa Rica-Panama border.”
The border is home to about 700 Costa Ricans and is a “gate” for several indigenous groups to more populated areas.
This particular trip’s itinerary includes 4-5 days of volunteer opportunities coordinated with local private non-profits, including things like marine conservation, and locally identified community and infrastructure projects.
Afternoons are open for more “touristy” activities such as surfing lessons, guided horseback rides through the jungle, or monkey and bird sight seeing.
Scott is a life-long world-traveler and backpacker. She’s been traveling since she was 16.
“I’ve been a bit of a wanderer since I can remember,” Scott said. “I probably get it from my dad.”
She saw The Badlands of America and backpacked through Europe early in her adult life. A fan of volcanoes, she’s been to active and inactive ones in Europe, “a big reason why Hawaii remains on my bucket list.”
So, she understands booking trips for specific culture exploration and for “seeing where the wind takes you.”
She has been the defacto trip planner for her group of friends for many years. With no particular formal training in travel agency, Scott put her skills used in her day job to work in creating trips that would be exciting and fulfilling for herself and her friends.
“I’m a planner by nature. I look for patterns and plan for solutions,” Scott said. “It was a lot of fun, and I liked making itineraries as needed, checking out what to experience locally, and even how to book time on a trip that’s just ‘free play’ essentially.”
One component of travel, that of being able to give back to those that “graciously host you,” had become a larger part of her travel planning, and part of her overall philosophy.
“I am a firm believer in paying it forward,” she said. The idea for Adventures in Kindness came about after witnessing her young son’s desire to help a homeless man on the side of the road looking for help.
“He immediately wanted to help and began digging for food we had in the car,” Scott said. “It filled my heart to see that unselfishness in an innocent mind that can be ruined by maturity and the cynicism that can come along with it.”
The company was, “founded on the belief that kindness is innate in all of us and should be nurtured as we raise the next generation of global citizens. Our commitment to creating culturally immersive and engaging adventures is grounded in both this belief as well as our unwavering commitment to creating meaningful and sustainable improvements in the communities we serve.”