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What is Service-learning?

International service-learning is a way for young adults to learn about global citizenship and community engagement, develop a deeper understanding of the world’s problems, and experience an unknown culture. We send thousands of students abroad every year through our tailor-made courses that are intended to fully immerse and challenge students in a variety of ways, for their personal and professional development.

What Does Service-learning Involve?

International service-learning puts academic, classroom learning into practice with a research-based element. Under the guidance of experienced educators, students will practice, review, and reflect upon a certain topic and bring their ideas to life while providing vital services to underprivileged communities. Groups could be involved in renovating a crumbling classroom in Cape Town, completing biodiversity surveys and species identification walks in Thailand, or taking part in fish and coral data collection dives in Mexico. Students will immerse themselves in an unknown culture while contextualizing their experience within an established curriculum. This means that they will come home more employable, equipped with a variety of improved soft and hard skills, and typically have a more defined career path.

Our Health & Safety Standards

At GVI, we understand how imperative health, safety, and support is to all concerned. Therefor, it is something we take very seriously. Ultimately, upholding our high safety standards comes down to having well trained and managed staff, good protocols, and finally, well trained and managed participants. We have a strong international staff structure, incorporating experienced, trained, and dedicated personnel into a fun, professional, and caring team. To find out more about our protocols, please click on the box on the right.



Our Team


Health & Safety


GVI's Service Learning Brochure


When you visit another country and experience a different culture first hand, it opens your mind far beyond the ability of any textbook. My wanderlust kicked in early, driving me from one continent to the next, and it served me well. It tested my mettle, and I never came out poorer for it. Now, as a parent of four, I’m passionate about giving young people, our future generation, the opportunity to do the same – to explore safely, learn, grow and have fun. Our programs are fundamental to that strategy and goal. I can’t think of a better way to develop a sense of independence, promote responsibility and nurture a sense of purpose than to travel abroad with like-minded individuals and passionate, experienced group leaders. When young people are given the opportunity to discover their own potential, I find that they tend to become leaders, and when they’re given the opportunity to make a difference, I find that they tend to go beyond our expectations.

A letter from Richard Walton

Founder of GVI, parent of four.

Save The Children

‘Our partnership with GVI has allowed us to expand our programme of safeguarding at-risk children.’

DAN (Divers Alert Network)

‘GVI’s dive safety standards are exemplary’

South Africa National Parks (SANParks)

‘We choose GVI to help us run our program due to their field structure and excellent reputation.’

If only every student could do this. It changes your life in all the right ways. All that you do with GVI will be life changing for countless people all over the world. It is an extraordinary experience. It makes the world a better place.

Chris Herritage

Parent to Luke Herritage, South Africa and Costa Rica

I just wanted to send a quick note to tell you how much fun Evan had on her Thailand trip! The program was outstanding and life changing for her. She couldn’t have been more happy with everything and Leanne was amazing (her words).  Thanks for all you do to make these trips so beneficial for our kids. You should spread the word to our schools here in the States. You are a hidden gem that most don’t know about. Luckily we just happened upon GVI last spring with Evan’s quest to find a Thailand service trip on the beach.

Jackie Null

Parent to Evan Null, Phang Nga 2015

Meet Us

We run personalized meet up events around the world, giving you a chance to meet our team and find out more about our service learning courses.

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