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City slicker to roo carer: The journey of a wildlife voluntourist

Tan, E.ORCID: 0000-0002-1396-762X (2013) City slicker to roo carer: The journey of a wildlife voluntourist. In: BEST EN Think Tank XIII Conference: Engaging Communities in Sustainable Tourism Development, 23 - 26 June 2013, Taylors University, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia



The level of interest and participation in voluntourism has progressively become a major sector in contemporary tourism. The notion of combining a novel and pleasurable tourism experience with the fulfillment of contributing a worthwhile cause whilst on vacation has drawn voluntourists towards a myriad of volunteer tourism programs and sites around the world. This study investigates the profile of wildlife voluntourists, based on the dimensions of volunteerism habits and experiences, volunteer activity and site selection criteria, pre-trip preparations and expectations, evaluation of satisfaction, depth of transformative learning and experience. Roo Gully Wildlife Sanctuary in Boyup Brook, Western Australia and its international volunteers were the focus-population utilized in this study. The study revealed several key issues and dimensions of wildlife voluntourism that were prevalent yet divergent from other studies on voluntourism. In particular, the discussion focuses on elements and constituents conducive to transformative learning and suggests an enhanced conceptual model of transformative learning that may be applied for future research and suggestions for more effectual learning outcomes and experiences for volunteers.

Item Type: Conference Paper
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