Home Institution

Muhlenberg College

Publication Date

Spring 2015

Program Name

Nepal: Tibetan and Himalayan Peoples


The purpose of this research paper is to shed light on and explore the detrimental effects orphanage volunteer tourism has on communities in Nepal, especially the orphans themselves and their families who become subject to different degrees of manipulation, deceit and abuse due to the industry. This study will also delve into the Nepal Civil War’s effect on orphan trafficking in Nepal, the effects of institutionalization, media and campaigns launched against voluntourism, and other related topics. The paper particularly focuses on orphanage voluntourism in the tourist heavy and capital of Nepal, Kathmandu.

The information in this report was attained through interviews conducted with several non-governmental organizations and other individuals related to tourism, orphanages, and child trafficking. This paper also relied heavily upon already existing reports, media articles, laws and policies, and other online research. The paper serves to make the issue of voluntourism within orphanages more accessible and better understood, without oversimplifying this extremely complex issue. This report should inspire debate and discourse between people, further publicizing an issue that, until recently, has been shrouded in secrecy.


Asian Studies | Civic and Community Engagement | Community-Based Research | Criminology | Educational Sociology | Family, Life Course, and Society | Inequality and Stratification | Place and Environment | Social Control, Law, Crime, and Deviance | Tourism | Work, Economy and Organizations


Article Location