Travis Kumph is a co-founder of Friends New England, a 501(c)3 non-profit dedicated to educational and social development projects in Nicaragua and Peru. Travis published Peace of Me, a collection of reflections about volunteering abroad and the impact it can have on not just the communities being served, but on the volunteers themselves. His book is the inspiration for the feature documentary H.O.P.E. Was Here, to be released in 2014.
You can't make a difference on a short volunteer trip, no matter your intentions. But maybe you can start by building connections over time.