Spending My Retirement Helping Others


Where is the least expensive place I can retire and live like a king and help the people and children of that area? I have retired and am looking to maybe do like you all did for a while. Travel around for low dollars and live well with people.


  Volunteer. Change a life!

Hi Gabe,

Congratulations on your retirement! Wow! Good for you!

There are literally dozens and dozens and dozens of places you could go and “live like a king” while helping other people.

Akaisha with hill tribe children, Thailand

I think it would help if you clarified certain things like:

* Would this place be a temporary stop over or are you looking for a permanent location? It’s hard to make a permanent decision when you won’t really know a place until you live there for a time, going through all your seasons. Or maybe you would like to live in various places until you find the one that grabs your heart.

* Weather. That’s pretty important for the long run. If you like hot and humid, Asia, the Caribbean (Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic or even Belize) or the Philippines would be excellent choices. If you like cooler or more temperate weather, Mexico, Ecuador, and certain places in Central America would be good choices.

Billy built new tennis courts in Chapala, Mexico

* Do you want to do a project on your own with your own funding? Or would you rather join an organization which already has things set up? We just recently met a woman who has an organization that has been going to Haiti for decades. (talk about need! Take a look here: Colorado Haiti Project)

We lived in Chapala, Mexico for years, and did our own projects – Billy worked with the city to build tennis and volleyball courts (Tennis Court Construction, Light, Tennis, Action! Tennis and Volleyball Courts) and I taught English as a second language to kids, built a handmade note card business where I utilized local labor and taught them how to do this, and I also taught massage for free to anyone who wanted to learn.

Akaisha teaching Thai massage to locals in Mexico

There is need everywhere, Gabe. You won’t find a shortage, believe me.

Here in Guatemala we have seen volunteer groups set up clean water sources for the Maya villages in the mountains. Others are putting together solar coffee bean driers made out of painted soda pop cans, and another group is bringing in a method of solar light to homes using plastic liter soda bottles (See Liter of Light Programs)

You could check with your local contacts (Church groups, charity groups, University volunteer programs) or check our Volunteer Page for ideas and how to contact organizations that are already doing these things. Of course, you could always do a Google Search on the topics that most interest you like bring clean water or mentor in Central America or Expat Volunteer Groups– anything like this.

Billy sharing computer photos with hill tribe family, Thailand

Would you want to utilize the products of local labor and export them? Would you like to teach locals a new trade or skill so they would be more employable? Would you like to build schools or medical clinics?

Once you get started the opportunities expand exponentially. Then you just choose what interests you most. Cost of living in these locations is far lower than in the States and you may also find that over time, you will “need” less as well.

Indigenous woman selling silk weavings, Laos

Please, if you have any questions or want to know more, write and let me know. In some cases I could give you an email introduction, let you know about available medical care, tell you about climate of an area, or help you in some other way to get connected.

With your talents and experience, Gabe, you will be in great demand just about anywhere. And I know that you apply yourself so you will turn this into another great opportunity for everyone.

Keep in touch,

About Retire Early Lifestyle

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired three decades ago at the age of 38 and began traveling the world. As recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on topics of finance and world travel, they have been interviewed about retirement issues by The Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine, The Motley Fool Rule Your Retirement newsletter, nationally syndicated radio talk shows and countless newspapers and TV shows nationally and worldwide. They wrote the popular books The Adventurer's Guide to Early Retirement (Your Simple Path to FIRE) and Your Retirement Dream IS Possible.
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