Make a difference to people in need

March 31, 2016

We are launching an exciting new Community Health internship which gives you hands on experience helping some of the poorest communities in the Caribbean.

We are working with our not for profit partners and mission volunteers in the Dominican Republic to help Haitian sugar-cane workers and their families living in villages, called bateyes, which often lack basic sanitation and where the residents have no access to healthcare.laromana_JamiesonLapoint_February201624

During a week on the program, you’ll visit different communities to observe and help deliver essential healthcare, working in pop up clinics alongside doctors and nurses from our partner hospital, other Gap Medics students and mission groups.

You will assist your mentor as they deliver treatment and advice to hundreds of people on a unique program, which combines the best of a volunteering opportunity with everything that makes our regular placements so valuable: strong mentoring, relevant experience and the chance to take a glimpse into your future career.

Volunteer in the bateyes

The living conditions here are very basic, with dirt roads and dilapidated housing, scarce access to facilities like running water and very limited healthcare facilities. The average worker earns only around $5 a day working dawn till dusk, and the poverty is abundantly clear.

Former Gap Medics student Jamieson has made a two minute video explaining what life is like and how you can help:

When this destination, for those aged 18 and over, opens fully in May all of our usual hospital shadowing internships will of course be available so they can be combined with the new Community Healthcare internship.

So you can not only learn about global healthcare but also gain valuable experience that’ll strengthen your applications for medical school. We’re not saying you’ll change the world overnight, but you can begin to make a real difference to the lives of people living and working in the Dominican Republic today.

Kick-start your medical career

Due to the extreme poverty and lack of access to healthcare facilities, you’ll get the chance to observe a wide range of cases and symptoms, including high blood pressure, skin diseases such as scabies or ringworm, wounds and malnutrition.

You could see hundreds of patients during the week, as doctors typically continue to work until everyone has been seen. This experience will also give you the opportunity to develop leadership and team building skills, gain a deeper understanding of global healthcare and forge lasting bonds with friends from across the globe.

The community healthcare program in La Romana is available to book now for placements starting from May when the Dominican program officially opens.