We’re entering the heart of winter, which means you’re probably fantasizing about a tropical getaway. You could pay for an all-inclusive Caribbean vacation, or you could travel to the Bahamas for free with Airbnb. In partnership with the Bahamas National Trust, Airbnb just announced an eight-week Bahamas sabbatical for five lucky people to work on preservation projects on three beautiful islands.
The sabbatical will involve helping to restore coral reefs in Andros, supporting ethical fishing in Exuma, and promoting traditional agriculture in Eleuthera. According to Airbnb’s website, the program was designed to “directly benefit local communities while supporting efforts toward a sustainable future. Over the course of the program, you’ll support important preservation projects inside the country’s national parks led by the Bahamas National Trust, and help design future Experiences centered around The Bahamas’ unique cultural heritage.”
If you’re one of the lucky five chosen for the trip, you will live with local hosts on the islands, become part of their communities, and get intimately acquainted with the area’s ecosystems, culture, and traditions. You can expect to help preserve one of the world’s largest barrier reefs by constructing and installing a brand new coral nursery; learn to fish red lionfish, an invasive species, to help other species thrive; and establish a bush tea farm to spread awareness of traditional natural remedies with the help of a local master gardener. Participants will also harvest sponges, dive in blue holes, learn about traditional boatbuilding, harvest sea salt, sail the archipelago, get involved in conch conservation, and learn about farming pineapples.
The Bahamas Sabbatical runs from April 1 to May 31. Applications are being accepted through February 18. Just fill out this form on the website, explaining what excites you most about the sabbatical.