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We were really pleased to see this article in Wanderlust Magazine. It communicates very succinctly what we are:


Responsible Tourism Award Winner – people and places

We are thrilled to announce that people and places have won the 2009 Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourim Award for Best Volunteering Organisation!!! These are probably the most important responsible tourism awards in the world and certainly the most widely respected.

Sallie Grayson, Programme Director, was particularly pleased with the judges citation:

“people and places has exercised leadership in a sector bedevilled by poor practice and established a replicable business model. Committed to reporting transparently on the money that volunteers pay, they ensure that the volunteers meet their full costs and are not a burden on the community; and carefully match the skills of volunteers to the needs of that community without replacing local labour. They have taken the ground breaking step of having their work externally audited and publishing it online. These four principles set not only a practicable standard for operators to aspire to, but offer valuable guidelines for tourists seeking legitimate and socially beneficial volunteering experiences.”

Take a look at the charitable projects promoted by people and places via TravelPledge.

Travel Matters joins TravelPledge

Independent travel agency Travel Matters has joined sustainable travel charity TravelPledge as an official supporter, helping their clients to give back to the destinations that they visit.

South West London based agency Travel Matters becomes the fourth company to join TravelPledge as a supporter, and has nominated two projects that will receive funding through the charity. These include a community bicycle repair and maintenance programme in South Africa, and a UK based project that will help disadvantaged families take their first holiday away together.

TravelPledge was launched in January 2009 in response to the growing desire from travellers to contribute financially to charitable social and environmental projects in the destinations they visit. The registered charity aims to help travellers connect and give back to the places they have visited in a more direct and meaningful way. With the backing of Responsible Travel, People and Places and Carbon Responsible, TravelPledge has already reached its funding targets for seven projects.

Karen Simmonds, the owner of Travel Matters, commented, “Since returning from travelling in India last year, I have tried to build an awareness campaign to encourage people to think about their travel choices and have worked with local schools to teach children how their behaviour overseas can make an impact on the local community economically and socially.”

Karen continued, “By joining TravelPledge, we have made it much easier for our clients to directly support a particular project and see their money making a difference. TravelPledge works with local delivery partners ensuring the funds go directly to the project. This has given us peace of mind and saved us much precious time on sourcing NGOs and delivery partners.”

Nick Chaffe, director of TravelPledge, added, “We are delighted to welcome Travel Matters as a supporter, and look forward to working closely with the company and its customers to raise money and awareness for international charitable projects. Travel Matters’ backing of TravelPledge demonstrates its admirable support of sustainable travel and we anticipate a long and productive relationship with the team.”

For further details on TravelPledge or to become a supporter, visit


Notes for editors

Travel matters is an independent travel agency which has been established for 11 years. Based in south west London, it is a family focused travel agency. is the awareness campaign, developed by Travel Matters, to encourage clients to think about their holiday choices and the impact they have socially, economically and environmentally.

TravelPledge was launched in January 2009 in response to the growing desire from travellers to contribute financially to charitable social and environmental projects in the destinations they visit. A registered charity, TravelPledge retains 0% of project funding and is currently supported by Responsible Travel, People and Places, Carbon Responsible and Travel Matters.

For further press information contact Sara Whines at bgb communications,

0207 902 2990 or


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