You can do more than volunteer. You can help rewrite a story.

You understand the tangled complexities of volunteering abroad. You know that good intentions alone aren’t enough and that there’s more to giving back than playing with kids in an orphanage or teaching English in a remote village.

Bottom line: You want to make a social impact and do it responsibly.

We are New Lens Travel.

We run reverse volunteer trips, where we learn from locals rather than help them.

New Lens Travel works with storytellers and creatives who act as our local guides in Ghana and Kenya. They take us behind the scenes as they use reporting, photography and filmmaking to rewrite African narratives. 

We don’t send hundreds of people abroad every year. And we don’t do cookie cutter volunteer placements and feel-good promises.

We help build relationships with people who will shape your worldview. We embrace difficult, but important conversations about issues like power, privilege and oppression.

We know you’ll wrestle with tough questions and be challenged.

And just like us- we know you’ll walk away from the experience with a new lens.

Join us in shifting the one-sided narrative that’s already out there.

Here's how it works... 


Submit an application to let us know your interests and availability. We'll make sure you're a perfect fit.


Once you're accepted, we'll craft you a custom placement while you prepare to travel. Pack your bags!


Join a group of travellers as you immerse yourself in learning from storytellers and changemakers.

Our storytellers are...

  • Locals of Ghana & Kenya who have strong contacts and a deep understanding of the context.

  • Creative, entrepreneurial go-getters. They’ve launched podcasts, started media agencies and pioneered reporting in their chosen field. 

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Join us for an immersive experience where you'll spend one-on-one time with these incredible storytellers.

When you participate in a New Lens Travel program, you get to...

  • Partner up with a local storyteller who is working to change the pity-focused narrative we hear about Africa.

  • Use storytelling as a tool to learn about social issues and community development.

  • Rewrite the story. Use your experiences to let the world know that Africa is so much more than a poverty-stricken continent that makes a good backdrop for safaris and Facebook profile photos.

And while you’re at it, we think cultural learning and new experiences should be part of the agenda. So...

  • You’ll develop a portfolio of stories and photos to help you share your experience once you return home.

  • You’ll experience the culture as you check out local art exhibits and jam to all the afrobeat music that the local nightlife has to offer. (Heard of Fuse ODG or Sauti Sol? You will.)

  • You can walk across the famous suspended bridges in Kakum National Park, try your hand at pounding fufu, shop in bustling markets and visit a monkey sanctuary.

What’s included:

  • Pre-departure training on topics including: cross-cultural communication,
    anti-oppression and socially conscious storytelling

  • A virtual toolkit to familiarize yourself with the country's history and current affairs

  • A custom placement with a local storyteller

  • Airport pick up and drop off

  • In-country orientation

  • Shared accommodations

  • Two meals per day

  • 24/7 support from a trip leader

  • Debriefing and support upon completion of placement

  • A donation to youth media programs so you can support the next generation of African storytellers

To ensure every participant gets personalized support, we cap our trips at 10 people.

It's time to see the world through a New Lens.

From Under $50 uSD per day