Zambia - Livingstone Healthcare and Community Outreach
Immerse yourself in the unique Zambian lifestyle while gaining valuable insight into the healthcare system and providing much needed educational outreach. In the afternoons, volunteers will join a range of projects designed to improve the lives of community members.
|Location of Project||Livingstone, Zambia|
|Project Length||Min 2 weeks - Max 12 weeks|
|Arrival Airport||Livingstone International Airport|
|Volunteer Work||Medical support, community outreach, work with the elderly, work with children|
|Number of Participants||Up to 20 international volunteers|
|Age||18 - 70|
|Accommodation||Shared rooms in a house|
|Food||3 meals a day (excluding weekends)|
|Support||Local in-country team and 24hr emergency support|
|Airport Transfers||Included on arrival and departure day|
|Transportation||Daily transfers between accommodations and project site|
|Pre-Departure Kit||Full project details will be sent following registration|
|Orientation||All necessary training and introductions provided upon arrival|
|Insurance||Comprehensive travel health insurance with volunteer abroad coverage|
|Vaccinations||Volunteers planning on travelling to Botswana need to ensure they have an updated Yellow fever vaccination and card.|
What's Not Included
|* Please note that volunteers staying longer than 30 days will need to apply for a "temporary employment permit." This costs approximately $250 USD to be paid upon arrival in Zambia.|
Travel to Zambia and experience firsthand the authentic African culture and eye-opening lifestyle of native Zambians. Zambia is Africa's most urbanized country, with a huge percentage of the population localized in just a few urban centers scattered throughout the country. These densely packed regions often suffer from extreme poverty, unemployment, HIV/AIDS, and illiteracy.
This project takes place in Livingstone, a town located in the Southern Province of Zambia and directly next to the famous Victoria Falls. Livingstone has a history of economic instability due to its proximity to the Zimbabwean border and restrictive regulations on trade in the past. However, Livingstone is now slowly emerging as a lively town with modern restaurants, shopping, hotels, and theaters.
About the Project
This project aims to provide the severely under-staffed and poorly-resourced medical clinics in Livingstone and the surrounding areas with volunteers who are eager to make a difference in peoples' lives. Additionally, volunteers will have the opportunity to be involved in many community activities, ranging from afterschool literacy programs to sustainable community farming. There is no need for prior medical knowledge, however those with specialized medical experience will be appropriately utilized and greatly appreciated for their contributions.
Volunteer Work and Contribution
Volunteers will spend their mornings at one of the multiple healthcare projects listed below:
Clinic assistance: The clinics in the area suffer from serious shortages of staff, so the nurses greatly appreciate any assistance volunteers can provide to decrease their workload and ensure more efficient and effective treatment of patients. You may be volunteering at clinics with outpatient services, HIV and TB services, maternity services, and pharmacies. Your duties here may include:
- Filing patient records
- Observing patient care and seeing how healthcare services function in Zambia
Home-based care: The bed-ridden and immobile patients of Livingstone are visited at home for their treatments. Most of these patients suffer from long-term, debilitating diseases such as HIV, tuberculosis, or malaria. Volunteers will accompany local caregivers to provide treatment. Here you may be required to:
- Provide comfort, care, and advice
- Inform patients about the importance of hygiene, nutrition, diet, and adhering to medication regiment
HIV education and health talks: Health education is the first step in preventing disease and promoting healthy choices and lifestyles. With the help of local staff, volunteers will faciliate community courses to deliver important healthcare information. The syllabus topics include:
- HIV/AIDS awareness
- Basic hygiene
- Importance of healthy living (diet and exercise)
Elderly home: This elderly home is poorly funded by the government and the residents often have no family or caretakers to look after them. Here, you will have a wide variety of roles including:
- Providing the residents with a friendly face and opportunity to socialize
- Conducting health talks on personal hygiene and health
- Encouraging mobility for those residents in need
HIV education in prisons: The inmate population is one that is at high-risk and extremely vulnerable for contracting and spreading HIV/AIDS. Here, you will have the opportunity to partake in the following:
- Spread awareness about HIV/AIDS and how to prevent it
- Educate inmates about how cope once infected
- Addressing the stigam of HIV/AIDS
Please note that this specific project is only available to volunteers who are selected by the on-site project managers. Eligibility will be based on criteria such as past medical experience, ability to communicate well with others in English, maturity, and age.
After your morning medical tasks, you will have the option to participate in other community projects throughout the area. These include:
- Building and construction projects: You will be building classrooms for childhood education initiatives.
- Farming: Help the community work towards self-sufficiency by working on a sustainable farming initiative.
- Reading club: Help children after school with reading and literacy.
- Art club: Plan your own arts-and-crafts projects to nurture creativity.
- Adult literacy club: Help young adults in the community improve their literacy and ultimately find employment.
- Senior living home: Assist the staff in providing care for people without families to look after them.
- Afterschool clubs: Play with preschool-aged children after school.
A typical day: After breakfast, your work day begins at 7:45 am at one of the morning projects. After a one-hour lunch break at 11:15 am, you will take part in one of the afternoon community projects until 5:00 pm, when you will be taken back to the volunteer house for dinner. Evenings and weekends are free and can be spent as you wish.
Accommodations: Volunteers will sleep in same-sex, shared rooms (for 6-8 people) in a large, comfortable, and secure volunteer complex located just a 5 minute walk from Livingstone's town center. Bed linens are provided (but please bring your own towel), a lockable cupboard is available in each room to store your valuables (please bring your own padlock), and a daily cleaning service is included as well. The complex provides great social opportunities with other volunteers as it can house up to 87 people total and contains a dining area, bar, T.V. lounge, resource center, swimming pool, large garden, and a rock climbing wall.
Food: 3 meals a day are provided during the work week. Breakfast is on a help-yourself basis and includes cereals, toasts, coffee, and tea. Lunch and dinner are full meals prepared by the staff cook. Meals are not provided on the weekends, so this is a great time to go out and explore the local restaurants and cuisine!
Internet: WIFI available at the complex for small fee
Laundry: Service provided for about $4 per load
Volunteers will get weekends off to explore the area and go on additional trips. Although these are not included in your program fee, our staff would be happy to help you arrange exciting excursions for this time. In the past, volunteers have enjoyed:
- Dinner/sunset cruise on the Zambezi River (about $35-$45)
- 2 night safari in Chobe National Park (about $200)
- White water rafting on the Zambezi River (about $150 for a half day)
- Bungee jumping and gorge swings over the Batoka Gorge (about $105-$125)
- Helicopter ride over the Victoria Falls (about $150 for 15 minutes)
- 2 night boat cruise along the Zambezi River (about $180)
- Minimum age 18
- Police background check
- Immunizations (proof of Yellow Fever vaccination required for travel into Zambia. Consult your local travel clinic for any other recommendations)
- Proof of medical qualifications if wanting to work in maternity wards
- Strong desire to help others
- Ability to work in a team
- Basic English
For this program, volunteers are required to purchase a business visa to Zambia upon arrival. For a single entry, it will cost about $50 USD, and for multiple entry, about $80 USD. It is the sole responsibility of the participant to arrange for and cover the costs of the appropriate visa.
Volunteers travelling to Zambia for over 30 days will need to apply for a Temporary Employment Permit, which costs approximately $250 USD.
Zambia has recently begun to require proof of vaccination for Yellow Fever upon arrival per recommendation of the World Health Organization. Consult your doctor to arrange this and to discuss any other immunization recommendations.