The Travel Dispatch

The Trip That Changed My Life Charity Book Project

This post was born 23 May, 2016 4 Comments
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Occasionally someone will get really drunk and message me with some nonsense about how I inspire them.

The liquor courses through their veins until it reaches their fingertips upon which my inbox chimes as I’m hit with some delusional soliloquy about how my incessant ramblings have taught them it’s okay not to take life too seriously. Or something about how my writing convinced them to visit a destination they had never considered before. Or the worst one of all – they’ll thank me for making them laugh with my personal anecdotes.

It’s awkward and embarrassing and makes me blush for days on end.

So depending on my mood I’ll either ignore them or politely respond with your sweet but clearly you have me confused with someone else as A) I’m a complete mess whose advice you should NEVER listen too B) these so-called “funny anecdotes” are not meant to be humorous, they’re me being transparently honest about how screwed up I am in the head or C)  I do not write this blog to be inspirational – I just like to hear myself talk.

But every once in a while someone hits send at exactly the right time (normally when I’m between margarita number three and tequila shot number seven) and I respond with a different answer.

As was the case when Hung from Up, Up, and a Bear contacted me about using my travel experiences and power of words to help out with a charity book project he was working on.

Project Alpha

The Trip That Changed My Life book graphics

An avid traveler, Hung is no stranger to the cultural learning opportunities that come with explorative travel. He samples the local cuisine, endeavors in artistic pursuits, and revels in the unfamiliar scenery. Yet despite all the positive awareness he has accumulated over the years, he’s also found himself exposed to the negative side of travel – the side many travelers turn a blind eye to. He’s seen past the shiny facades that cater to tourists. The same tourists who unknowingly spend money that oftentimes goes straight to the local government’s pockets while local citizens reap none of the benefits. This especially holds true in third world countries where most residents live well below the poverty line.

Witnessing this firsthand made Hung realize how privileged he was in his freedom to see the world and it inspired him to take action.

Hence Project Alpha was born.

Project Alpha and The Trip That Changed My Life

Project Alpha is a global book project pulling together travelers from all over the world to write about the one trip that changed their life. The intent is to show how transformative travel can be while simultaneously giving back to the communities that have changed travelers’ lives for the better.

The Trip That Changed My Life book cover

Over 50 travelers who’ve collectively traveled to 142 different countries have submitted their stories to be included in the book. All funds raised through this project will be donated to two different international charities – Save the Children and Unbound.

I’m proud to say that not only will my own personal story be covered in this extraordinary compilation, but I’m also part of the incredible assembly of editors. I’ve now gone through several of these stories and let me tell you – THEY ARE CAPTIVATING.

To top it all off (as if the above wasn’t enough of an honor) Hung truly humbled me by asking if I would be willing to write the foreword to the book.

To which I naturally replied…

The trip that changed my life book project

How to Purchase the Book

Our end goal is to raise $5,000 for our selected charities (more information on the two organizations can be found later on in this post). To achieve this we will need to reach a total of $8,000 to account for book production as well as shipping and handling fees. The project was officially launched less than 24 hours ago and we already have raised over $1,500!!

No one involved in this project will make one dime off of your purchase nor will we receive any sort of affiliate commission.

We are 100% doing this to give back to those less fortunate. 

The book is available in three different formats and price points:

  • E-Book: $10
  • Black-and-White Paperback Book: $25 and will also include the e-Book
  • Full-color Coffee Table Book: $65 and will also include 1 black-and-white paperback book as well as 1 e-Book

All versions of the book can be purchased on our Indiegogo site by clicking here. Our site also includes discounted bundles for those who wish to purchase multiple books (all options are on the right hand sidebar of our Indiegogo page).

To help get you even more excited about what lies within the pages of the book, our awesome team created this promotional video comprised of clips from all of our travels:

About The Charities

Unbound is an organization that provides support to communities by helping mothers and families to build a healthy environment; which in turn will improve the lives of children in those communities. Furthermore, Unbound spends 92.5% of all donations towards programs and NOT overhead costs.

Save the Children provides direct support to children around the world in times of crisis and puts together safeguards for their future. Programs include educational projects, disaster emergency response training, health and nutritional projects, and many other initiatives. Furthermore, Save the Children spends 89% of all donations towards programs and NOT overhead costs.

Book Release Schedule

The Trip That Changed My Life book release schedule

Other Ways You Can Help

We are focused on minimizing cost which means that $0 will be spent on Facebook ads, Twitter sponsored posts, etc. which means we are relying on YOU to help spread the word. Each share, comment, shout-out, mention, and post on social media means the world to us! Tell all your friends and family. Share this project on any social platform you’re a part of. Write about us on your blog. Talk about us on YouTube.


You can connect with us on the following social media handles/pages:

You can also tag as using our official hashtags: #projectalpha #book4charity #tripchangedlife #projectalphatravelbook

Thank you all in advance for your support on this project. It has been a blast to be a part of and I love seeing travelers coming together to give back!

Was there a particular trip or experience that changed your life? Let me know in the comments below!


Why Suffer From FOMO When You Don’t Have To?

Taking on the classic “round-the-world” route, the next Travel Dispatch journey kicks off Nov 15 as I travel east to west, looping the globe over a period of 12 months with $25,000. Now’s your chance to get in on it from the very beginning!

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4 Comments on "The Trip That Changed My Life Charity Book Project"

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Awesome, fabulous, inspiring post, Kristen, and I’m not even drunk! You said it all so eloquently – I would certainly have asked you to write a forward for my own book if one existed. I love being part of such an inspiring project, and I can’t wait to explore your blog a bit more!

Svetoslav Dimitrov

Kristen, I loooved this post which made me smile so wide and yet shed a tear (out of happiness). I cannot wait to read your Foreword.

And, do you give lessons on how to write like that? I am willing to sign for them or for a workshop! :)))