If I had to define the spirit that I like to adopt while traveling, I would probably choose the saying : "Traveling is to comeback to the essentials ".
Being a French student, but first a citizen of the world, I arrived in Quebec approximately three months ago with my small suitcase and moved temporarily to complete my internship as part of my Master in sustainable development and recreation.
My new home for the next five months, Cap-Rouge, Quebec
I immediately fell in love with a young quebecker organization named Village Monde. In few words, Village Monde is: a warm atmosphere, friendly colleagues, millions of promising projects and unlimited coffee (what a bargain!). In other words, it is a place where the employees, the interns and the volunteers alternate with each other all year long to bring their contribution for a common purpose: increasing and democratizing community based travel off the beaten path. A responsible and fair tourism that combines respect, encounters and sharing for travel with a positive impact.
Our fabulous team at Village Monde, employees, volunteers and our guest of honor
My mission? Searching, via the Internet, accommodations with social, economic or environmental benefits for the communities or at a local level. So far, the priority was to target accommodations in developing countries in order to help them benefit from their development and gain visibility as quickly as possible. The progress being positive, the idea came out to explore Canada and more specifically Quebec in first place.
You may be asking yourself " Why Canada? ", and you are totally right! Indeed, Canada is known as a wealthy country or a northern country, but that doesn’t mean there is no initiatives aiming to make the world a better place! Between the isolated villages (Have you eve heard of Ouje-Bougoumou?), aboriginal communities and the continuous investment of some hostels for causes they care about, Canada has a huge potential through initiatives that deserve to appear on Village Monde’s collaborative platform and play an important role in the development of community based tourism.
After the validation of the selected accommodations, Solène (my colleague) and I communicated with the best of the best and the labeling process began. The majority of the accommodations was happy and motivated by the idea of being promoted on Village Monde’s platform.
All that being done, I am going on a road trip with another quebecker colleague, Gabrielle, passionate by whales with an adventurous lifestyle. We are going on the road for 11 days to the meet all those initiatives.
There is less than a week before our exploration*thrill and excitement* and here we are planning our trip. In short: we will be travelling a little more than 1,200 miles, seeing wonderful landscapes, visiting 22 accommodations, meeting people we are never going to forget and last but not least: discovering the magnificence of Quebec.
Our itinerary for the next days
Finally, participating to this project gives me the feeling of being so small, but of being part of a project that is bigger than me, and frankly it makes me feel alive!
You will be able to follow our road trip on Village Monde's mini-site or on the Facebook group Sustainable Exploration.
See you on the road!