For both sites we have selected a range of gap year programmes, career breaks and volunteer work projects to suit all budgets and interests. Keeping words to a minimum we have displayed our selections pictorially and included projects with wildlife and the environment, with people and communities and also suggest a variety of CV or life enhancing internships and courses to study.
This is just part of what we have been doing lately. Our oldest site the Overseas Job Centre has also had a long overdue overhaul. I had updated the design of the front page of this site a while ago but have finally done away with the old look on the content pages too.
There is now a certain uniformity throughout all of our static sites and the navigation doesn’t go a little screwy on mobile devices – which was our main motivation for the update in the first place.
The changes are not just superficial. All the articles have been updated and a lot of old content archived. There is still a lot of work that needs doing. I’m currently weeding dud links out of our directory and will finally be adding the new ones sent to us or collected over the past couple of years!
As I do this I’m jotting down Facebook pages and Twitter accounts worth following for finding jobs abroad and gap years. We may also link to the experiences of working travellers put up on Youtube and already have a lot more content from bloggers to add to our new Workers of the World and Bloggers Guides to Working Abroad sections.
As for our own social media efforts we are putting a lot of material and tips we find on our own Facebook page. Some of the columns we do here on The Working Traveller I feel can be done better in an abridged form on Facebook, or even Twitter.
Exploring thousands of websites as I currently am, now would be a very good time to Like us – whenever I see an organisation or employer state they are currently looking for staff I’ll add it to our fan page.
We also have a Pinterest account set up ready to explore, though it may be another month or so before I’m ready to add any boards.
Another task on my list is adding new NGOs to our Free or Cheap Volunteer Work site.
In total we now have six separate but united websites grouped together under the PAYAway banner. Each site serves a specific function and our intention is for The Working Traveller to serve as the blog for each of them.
I have been working on all this on and off for over a year. There were a lot of false starts and I wasn’t entirely sure what form our gap year sites would take. I didn’t want to duplicate the gap year material we had elsewhere.
One thing that has become clear is that The Working Traveller has been a bit of a time hog since we started in May 2010. This winter has been spent mostly indoors out of the cold and dark getting all these jobs done but with summer approaching I doubt I can or will want to keep up the same pace. The same goes for when we are travelling and without reliable connections.
It is only in the past couple of weeks when I’ve stopped posting every day – Monday to Friday – that work on the bigger picture has progressed at a satisfactory clip. Though we will still post at least a couple of times a week (one photo, one article), and sometimes more, I intend to keep this flexibility from now on.
This doesn’t mean we will be working less, just that the work will be more shared out across all our sites. We will also have time to develop new ideas and – who knows – even answer the odd email or two.