STORYTELLING EXPEDITION

A multi-day documentary tour + workshop where you get experience telling meaningful stories on location. 

On each trip, a small group of photographers and filmmakers become a crew of citizen storytellers. Together we learn how to tell better stories about real life.

STORYTELLING EXPEDITION

A multi-day documentary tour + workshop where you learn how to travel as a storyteller.

On each trip, a small group of photographers and filmmakers become a crew of citizen storytellers. Together we learn how to tell better stories about real life.

CREW

TESTIMONIALS

TELL ME MORE

The best way to learn about the Storytelling Expedition experience is by signing up for the email series. Find out more about why we travel, how it works, and what you can expect.

LEARN HOW TO TELL BETTER STORIES ABOUT REAL LIFE

  • Explore the world + connect to what is real in our destination.
  • Meet remarkable leaders, experts, elders and changemakers. Take the time to listen to their stories.
  • Travel in the company of other adventurous creatives + learn best practices for collaborative and ethical story sharing.
  • Receive the mentorship, guidance and training you need.
  • Contribute your talents as a storyteller by documenting the work and wisdom we encounter.
  • Amplify the stories of everyday heroes (who are typically only seen through a lens of poverty).

This is NOT tourism-as-usual.

Actuality Abroad has led hundreds of impact-driven storytellers on documentary adventures that provided them the training, experience, and support they needed to learn and grow.

Come along and
TRAVEL LIKE A STORYTELLER

START YOUR

JOURNEY

STEP 1

Apply for any upcoming Storytelling Expedition trip.

STEP 2

Schedule a video interview and get all your questions answered.

STEP 3

Accept your invitation to join the crew and make your plans to travel.

"

The most meaningful travel experiences take place in the company of storytellers."

WHAT IS A CITIZEN STORYTELLER?

Citizen storytellers are everyday people who are interested in documenting and sharing important stories about real life.
 
Think about citizen storytelling as a way to volunteer with your interests and skills. Instead of serving in a soup kitchen, building for Habitat for Humanity or joining a beach clean up, you contribute your stories. Citizen storytellers don’t have to be professionals. You can use whatever kind of media-making abilities you have in service to the changemakers you care about. 
 
As a traveler, when you take up the mantle of a citizen storyteller, you now have a purpose to frame all of your future journeys. You can experience destinations from the perspective of the people who live there, develop relationships with remarkable humans who live differently than you, and use your travels to contribute in a useful, meaningful way.
 

As a citizen storyteller, you have the power to tell stories that fuel connection. You can provide hope, dismantle prejudices, heal wounds, share solutions, and reveal the good in our world. Now, what will you use your power for?

FREQUENTLY ASKED

QUESTIONS

The Storytelling Expedition is designed for media-makers of any experience who want to travel with purpose. If you have an interest in photography, videography, blogging, podcasting, or any other kind of digital storytelling, you’d be a great fit. Professional storytellers are welcome, but you do not have to be a professional to be able to contribute. 

You determine how you want to participate and contribute on the Storytelling Expedition. You can choose to join the Photography Team, Filmmaking Team or Producing Team, depending on where your interests lie. Each team will be made up of 2-6 people.

  • If working on the photography team, you may produce stories individually or in partnership with others. These will become photo essays, portrait series, or behind the scenes galleries.

  • If working on the filmmaking team, you will produce several micro-documentaries over the course of the trip. You can take the lead as Director or Cinematographer for at least one of the stories and then serve in other roles for the others.

  • If working on the producing team, you collaborate with the Actuality producer. Expect to provide story, strategy and logistical support to both the photo team and video team.

We focus on solutions oriented human interest stories, that bring increased awareness to the work of social impact organizations in the communities we visit. These could take the form of micro-documentaries, photography essays, interviews in a variety of styles, portrait photography, audio recordings and more. The exact stories that we document in each community will be determined when we arrive there on the day. Only after we meet our collaborators in person and establish a connection, do we decide what kinds of stories we are interested in creating.

No. We will have guides and translators provided for each storytelling project. 

Each storyteller should bring a digital camera they are comfortable using for photography. Any kind of digital camera can be suitable, even most smart phone cameras. The most important thing is that you already know how it use it.

Actuality Abroad will provide video production equipment including cameras and sound recording equipment. If members of the video team would like to bring personal video cameras to utilize or accessories, you are welcome to.

You can also bring a laptop computer to review your media each day, but Actuality Abroad will have laptops for downloading, duplicating and processing on site. 

Everyone will need a 4TB+ hard drive to back up and bring their data home.

We highly recommend purchasing personal property travel insurance to cover loss or damage.

All the content produced on the Expedition that features the people or work of the social impact organization that we collaborate with will be licensed under Creative Commons (with attribution) so that every stakeholder can benefit from sharing it. Additionally, this content will need to be approved by all stakeholders (especially the individuals depicted in imagery) prior to any kind of distribution, including sharing on social media. We practice radical informed consent. 

Actuality Abroad retains the official copyright in order to ensure that the above standards are implemented and and maintained. Additionally, our program participants often come from around the world but with Actuality Abroad holding the rights, we can assure that our media makers are protected by the Fair Use doctrine of the United States.

For every approved piece of content, each storyteller is encouraged to share/submit freely. Using the content for any value-aligned commercial or money-making purpose could be considered, but will have to be discussed and approved by all stakeholders in advance.

If you create any media outside of the Storytelling Expedition’s scope of work, you retain all rights to that content. 

The Storytelling Expedition ends with an editing workshop on location where you can begin creating deliverables. The stories that are not delivered in country can be completed once you return home, or you can allow the our team at Actuality Abroad to handle the post production. Either way, we will work together to make sure that the stories we documented are finished, approved by all stakeholders, shared with everyone who wants access to the finished content and also distributed online to mutually agreed upon platforms. What these platforms are will be discussed between everyone involved in producing the story. 

During our travels into communities, there may be down time to rest or reflect, but not enough to plan any additional excursions. If you have other things you want to see or experience in country, we recommend that you arrive early or stay afterwards.

On the first day of the trip you will be met at the international airport and driven by private transport to our guesthouse to meet up with your Actuality Producer and the rest of the crew members. If you are arriving early, or traveling overland, you can make your way to our guesthouse on the day of arrivals, or we can help you book with them directly for additional nights before the start of the program.

The accommodations are semi-private bedrooms in a locally owned guesthouse. This is often a budget hotel or a boutique hostel. It is always safe, comfortable and clean but modest. We are NOT doing luxury travel. You share bedroom with 1-2 other crew members of the same gender. If you prefer to have a private bedroom, you can upgrade for an additional cost. 

Yes. You are welcome to arrive early or stay on in Guatemala after the Storytelling Expedition. We will make special arrangements for your arrival/departure and can offer recommendations on accommodations and activities. 

Yes. If your company offers volunteer time off (VTO), your experience on a storytelling expedition can count towards those hours.

TRIP APPLICATION

STORYTELLING EXPEDITION TO

GUATEMALA

June 21st - 30th 2024

NEXT STEPS...

Make sure to check your email for confirmation that we received your application. If you can’t find it, check your spam or junk folders and be sure to mark dispatch@actualityabroad.org as a safe sender from here on out. Follow the instructions in the email to move to the next stages of the application process.

Any issues?

Email us at dispatch@actualityabroad.org

TELL ME MORE

The best way to learn about the Storytelling Expedition experience is through our email series.

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