Chandell Stone has started a dream business. Combining social good, exotic travel, and cultural exchange, Destination Teach is Stone’s answer to educational needs in developing countries, where most of the populations consist of people of color.
Destination Teach sounds like a nonprofit, but Stone describes it as a social benefit corporation, which though it is for-profit, isn’t focused solely on profit-making but prioritizes its social mission.
And although the word teach is right there in its name, and Stone herself is a middle school assistant principal in the Bronx, New York, the organization isn’t just for educators.
“Anyone can go,” Stone assured me.
Started four years ago, Stone’s business takes mainly African Americans to places like Nairobi, Morocco, and Haiti where they spend eight days—most of which is pretty similar to a regular adventuresome, off-the-beaten-path kind of vacation.
“We do city tours, we go on safari, we do glamping”—a portmanteau word that combines glamorous with camping—which despite being on the Sahara, Stone assures me is safe.
But part of each tour involves the opportunity to serve—typically in a teaching capacity at a school, or providing teacher support. The organization also provides needed scholarships and supplies to its partner schools in developing countries.
The Destination Teach website says, “American ethnic minorities are virtually non-existent within international volunteer programs. At Destination Teach, we believe that diversifying travel cohorts allows for pertinent cross-cultural dialogue, and presents a more realistic representation of America to global communities.”
Its mission is to “inspire active global citizenship through travel, service, and cultural exchange.”
“I visited and was truly inspired by the teachers. I wanted to do something to support them. They were severely underpaid, lacked a college education, and had limited classroom resources. Nonetheless, they were extremely committed to serving their community and had sky-high expectations for what kids from the slums could accomplish. This really fueled my desire to pursue this program idea.”
To learn more about Destination Teach, and perhaps go on safari, visit its website.