As a volunteer on the San Bushmen Medical Programme, you will help provide primary healthcare to the local community and surrounding area in which around 500 San and Herero people live. Around 80% of the patients treated are San. The San are considered to be the oldest culture in the world and currently live in extreme poverty. Often suffering from malnutrition, disease, discrimination and abuse the San Bushmen Programme is providing a lifeline to this community through healthcare and education. Daily duties for volunteers may include:
Primary healthcare: observations, reassurance, treatments and emergency referrals.
Observations: pregnancy tests and urine tests
Weighing babies and recording growth charts
Blood pressure recordings
Glucose testing and recording
Help in the pharmacy: stock control and new orders
Substance abuse counselling
Data capture input
Assisting with community visits
General maintenance and cleaning
If volunteers have specific skills they feel the programme could benefit from they are always encouraged to use them and suggest new activities. Medical volunteers usually join for 2 or 4 weeks – as they run on a 12-night schedule (for the transfers).
Namibia is located in South West Africa, bordering on South Africa, Botswana, Angola and Zambia. Home to many contrasting environments the country is known for both desert and long stretches of coastline. Conservation is a national priority and Namibia has some of the largest and most well known national parks in the region.
Located only thirty minutes from Hosea Kutako International Airport amongst camel thorn trees, riverbeds, and a stone canyon, the Wildlife Sanctuary is perfectly situated to start or finish your trip to Namibia. This is where the head office is and the main volunteer activities take place. If you choose to combine with the other sites, Neuras is 2 hours away and Kanaan a further 2 hours drive.
While volunteering with the San Bushmen Medical Programme you will stay in a bungalow along with the resident Doctor and Nurse. You will either share rooms in pairs or have a private room depending on the number of volunteers at the time. As the clinic can only accommodate a maximum of 4 volunteers at a time the accommodation has a very homely atmosphere. The house has a kitchen, 2 bedrooms with single beds, 2 bathrooms and a living room (with TV) and electricity and hot water are freely available.
You will be provided with 3 meals a day which will be prepared amongst yourself and the other volunteers.
You may stay from 2 weeks to 3 months at any start or end date, however, we have set induction days on Tuesdays and Fridays and thus recommend that volunteers arrive on either a Monday or Thursday.