By Stacey Leasca
January 28, 2020
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It’s time you take a break from your regularly scheduled life and take a sabbatical instead. And Airbnb is here to make that happen.

Airbnb and the Bahamas National Trust, an NGO that protects 32 national parks in the country, just announced their new joint offering, the Bahamas Sabbatical. With the sabbatical, the two organizations are offering five lucky participants the life-changing opportunity to take time away from their normal lives to live in an ecological oasis. In a statement, the two organizations explained that the sabbatical is a way to help restore the islands after several devastating hurricanes, as well as a way to remind travelers that the islands are back and open for business.

Courtesy of Airbnb

“The Bahamas is open for business and while we work to restore parts of the archipelago devastated by Hurricane Dorian, the vast majority is ready for visitors,” Eric Carey, executive director of the Bahamas National Trust, said in a statement. “Partnering with Airbnb is an incredible opportunity to help further preserve our culture and resources and share our diverse country and the Bahamian way of life with the world.”

During the sabbatical, the participants will work alongside local experts on traditional practices in agriculture, ethical fishing, and coral reef revitalization.

Courtesy of Airbnb
Courtesy of Airbnb

Over the months of April and May, participants will be embedded on three beautiful island destinations: Andros, Exumas, and Eleuthera.

In Andros, participants will work with experts and underwater travel photographer Katie Storr to create a coral reef restoration program in North Marine Park, home to the third-largest reef system in the world. There, they will construct and install a brand-new nursery to help coral reef fragments grow. Later, those fragments will be transplanted to affected areas across the islands.

In Exuma, sabbatical-goers will work with freediver Andre Musgrove to replicate The Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park ecosystem and work to curb invasive species like the red lionfish. They will also participate in conch conservation, traditional boat building, and sailing.

And in Eleuthera, guests will work with Omar McKlewhite, a master gardener, and learn propagation techniques for the native trees and establish a bush tea farm. There, guests will also research native species, practice traditional pineapple farming, and harvest sea salt.

“As The Bahamas rebuilds, it’s a privilege to work together with the Bahamas National Trust to support and shine a spotlight on a nation whose economies are benefited by tourism,” Chris Lehane, senior vice president of global policy and communications at Airbnb, said in a statement. “To continue these efforts, we’re also pleased to sign a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Tourism to promote tourism to the country through Airbnb even beyond the Bahamas Sabbatical.”

Courtesy of Airbnb

To apply for the sabbatical visit airbnb.com/sabbatical and complete the form. All applicants must be over 18, available to be in The Bahamas for two months from April to May 2020, and demonstrate their commitment to contributing to island life.

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