Professional Volunteering Opportunities for Nurses in Nepal
Most nurses volunteering in Nepal work at a private teaching hospital in Chitwan.
Only 15% of Nepal’s population is provided for by its National Health service. The hospital where volunteers work in Chitwan charges approximately one fifth of what many private hospitals in Kathmandu charge, thus providing more affordable health care for poorer members of the community. In addition a hospital trust fund, partly funded through Projects Abroad, provides discounted and free healthcare for some patients.
Many students train at the hospital in Chitwan. Nurses can lead classes with the students and/or staff at the hospital. Volunteers are also able to participate in outreach programmes with disadvantaged groups in the local area.
This project is perfect for anyone qualified considering voluntary work abroad or nurses on a career break.
Here you will find answers to the following questions:
How can volunteer nurses help in Nepal?
As a volunteer nurse you can use your knowledge and training to help local staff improve standards of healthcare. Most of the facilities we work with are not short-staffed. However, volunteers are vitally needed to improve the standards of healthcare through training.
You can work on tasks such as:
- Organising and leading lectures, workshops and on the job training for staff and students at the hospital.
- Observing and in some case working with existing staff to treat patients in order to gain an understanding of medical practices in Nepal.
- Taking part in outreach programmes in the surrounding areas. This may include health camps, which provide basic health checks and vaccinations to remote communities.
- Visiting other organisations in the local community, such as a children’s home or a home for the elderly, where you may provide health check-ups and offer companionship.
The many differences between Nepal and your home country in terms of facilities, medical practices, language and culture means you will need to take some time to observe and get to know the local staff before you have the opportunity to do practical work.
Volunteers should note that the role of a nurse in Nepal is different to the UK. In Nepal the family, rather than nurses, take care of the patient (e.g. feeding, bathing).
Although senior hospital staff and Projects Abroad staff are able to speak English, most patients will not.
Most volunteers work 7am to 1 pm, or 9am to 4pm, Monday to Friday, although this may vary.
This project runs all year round so you can join at any time. You decide how much time you can spare and we will help you get the most out of it. Volunteers should be aware that it can take time to adjust to cultural differences and to gain the trust of local staff. Therefore, the longer you are able to volunteer, the more you and the hospital will gain from the project.
What will I gain from this project?
This voluntary work abroad will allow you to observe how medicine and nursing is practised in the developing world. You may also experience diseases, medical conditions and treatments that are uncommon in your home country. You will gain new skills through your work training local staff and students.
You will learn about the Nepalese culture and way of life through speaking to your new colleagues. Staff and patients will want to hear about your life back home and your family and friends. We call this ‘cultural exchange’ and we think it helps our volunteers gain a new perspective on life.
What will Projects Abroad PRO provide?
We have over 20 years’ experience of running volunteer projects. We provide you with the following support to make sure your time in Nepal is successful and enjoyable:
- Safe accommodation with a Nepalese family close to your project.
- Friendly and dedicated local staff available to help 24 hours a day.
- Collection on arrival at Kathmandu airport. You will spend your first night in a local hotel.
- Medical and travel insurance.
What skills or qualifications do I need?
You need to be fully qualified as a nurse, have a relevant licence to practise in your country of residence and 2 years' experience.
If you are interested in this project but don't have the relevant experience, then please read about our regular Nursing project in Nepal.
This placement is fully researched, safety audited and risk assessed in accordance with the British Standard BS8848 for the Adventure Travel Sector.