Tanzania Rural Health Movement (TRHM) volunteering program target to bring new experience to new volunteers around the World through involving them in community activities. TRHM has wide range of projects which includes Pre-Hospital care Project, Street Medicine Project and a Medical Dispensary Project.

The Volunteers will be involved in Pre-Hospital Care Projects and they will be responsible for providing first aid training to the first responders mainly boda-boda drivers (motor-bike taxi drivers) and support logistical implementation of the project. The volunteers will also be involved in raising awareness about the project in the local community through teaching first aid skills to different schools and colleges within Mwanza, Tanzania.

Street Medicine Project. In this project volunteers will gain hands-on wound care services, medical consultations, health promotion, laboratory tests and medicines dispensing to the ill street connected children and elderly people living on streets also the volunteers will be responsible for planning and preparation of the outreach including treatments and documentation.

Bisou Bailey Medical Dispensary Project.  Volunteers will be participating on daily activities at the facility these include provision of medical care services (Medical consultation, Laboratory Tests, Pharmacy, Maternal Services, Minor surgeries and Reproductive and Child Health Services –RCH) at primary level to the community around the facility and across Mwanza.

Research Studies and Development. All these projects have an extensive opportunity for placement research projects. There have been student volunteers from different countries conducting studies on the above mentioned projects. Volunteers have joined TRHM from all around the globe but mainly United States, United Kingdom and a few African countries. There is a great scope for publishing articles, writing reports or personal blogs on the Tanzanian experience. The recommendations on the project improvement by the volunteers will be highly encouraged and appreciated.

Inscription: TRHM charges a total of 920 USD per month from each volunteer. This would include accommodation, water, in country project transport, electricity and office internet as well as TRHM t-shirts. This is also inclusive of transportation from the airport while arriving and departing Mwanza.

The fee doesn’t cover Medical Insurance, Visa, International flights, Vaccination, Personal Meals.

Terms

The TRHM’s mission aligns with ethics of our movement. With various people from around the world, a sense fairness, honesty, integrity and respect is expected from all partners and volunteers.

Skills

TRHM has no profession requirement/criteria for the volunteers. Looking at the projects conducted by TRHM, medical personnel, such as medical students, doctors, nurses etc., Information System personnel, Accountancy, public health, teaching, fundraising expertise, administration and management volunteers will be highly preferred.

Prerequisite documents/Condition

  1. Return Air ticket
  2. Medical Insurance
  3. Vaccination Certificate
  4. Medical Report
  5. Temporary Business Visa

(Testimonial 1) –

In 2015, I spent four months in Mwanza-Tanzania with Tanzania Rural Health Movement (TRHM) as representative of Trek Medics International. The goal was to facilitate the creation and operation of a free and accessible out of hospital care program. With the help of Dr. Marko Hingi (Director of TRHM) we were able to accomplish this to a greater degree than either of us thought possible. TRHM is an amazing grassroots NGO run by volunteers comprised of doctors, nurses and healthcare students. Through their willingness to learn and determination they have been able to foster real change in Mwanza despite significant obstacles. Some of the programs of TRHM run include their Beacon project (In conjunction with Trek Medics International) and their Street Medicine Program which aim to treat wound and infections in homeless children of Mwanza.

I travelled to Mwanza with a goal of imparting knowledge however; I soon realized that it was me who would be doing the majority of learning. Marko and TRHM looked after me throughout my stay and were nothing but warm and welcoming throughout. If anyone is considering volunteering or travelling to Mwanza to work with Dr.Marko and TRHM, I would encourage you to do it! It will be an experience you will never forget and one that you can’t get anywhere else.

Scott Campbell

Representative of Trek Medics International

Medical Student, University of Southampton, UK

(Testimonial 2) –

On January 18th, I arrived in Mwanza City after a series of flights from New York, with a loose idea of what I would be doing for the following (almost) two weeks. The next day, I met with Dr. Marko Hingi at the Zonal Health Resource Centre Building, to discuss the Tanzania Rural Health Movement, and the work I would be doing during my stay in Mwanza. The day after, I began teaching piki piki (motorcycle taxi) drivers about emergency care and first aid. With the help of Trek Medics International, Marko implemented a system that uses Beacon GPS technology to send messages to nearby drivers, to have them assist in case of an emergency. I provided the training so that the drivers would become capable of providing assistance. The training occurred over a Saturday and Sunday, and finished with the drivers receiving certificates and kits containing medical supplies.

While in Mwanza, I also helped continue training for the fire department, as its commander aimed to improved its emergency medical training. This took place during the week, Monday through Friday. During that week, I also went with the fire fighters and various emergency calls, although that part involved more observation than anything else, as I learned much from the fire fighters during those moments. Lastly, I helped with the wound care project, helping to ensure that the wounds of street children living in Mwanza city were adequately treated.

My experience working with Dr. Hingi and Tanzania Rural Health Movement was excellent. I was excited to contribute my knowledge and skills in a meaningful way to the Mwanza community, and I received a very warm and kind welcome from everyone I met during my time in Mwanza. I consider myself very privileged to have contributed my knowledge to the organization, and to have been part of a group that creates such a positive impact on the community.

Samuel Lidsky (USA)(Testimonial 3) –

I am a Masters of Public Health student at the University of Nebraska Medical Center with Public Health Administration concentration. I went to Tanzania through Suzanne and Ward Chamber’s Global Health Fellowship offered by my college for 5 weeks. Tanzania Rural Health Movement (TRHM) had some great programs that perfectly matched my interests. Working with Dr. Marko Hingi was the best experience any student can gain in his/her professional life and Tanzania has so much scope for public health.

Tanzania is a country with diverse culture and religions. It won’t be wrong to say that I found a second home in Tanzania. Even having no knowledge in Swahili (official language of Tanzania), I never felt left out. Tanzanians are very friendly and welcoming people. I lived in Mwanza for 5 weeks and I always felt safe. Dr. Hingi had arranged a wonderful accommodation in private hostel which made my stay more comfortable.

I was mainly working on the BEACON program; SMS-based emergency dispatch system where my study concentrated to identify the barriers faced by the first responders trained by TRHM. Other than this TRHM has Wound Care Project which provides free wound care to street children. TRHM has great scope for research and program analysis. Any student or volunteer would be lucky to work with TRHM and Dr. Hingi.

Sachi Verma (University of Nebraska Medical Centre,Omaha. USA)

Local Culture

Mwanza is known as Sukuma land because most of the population comes from the Sukuma tribe, which main covers the region of Mwanza, Shinyanga and Tabora. Apart from speaking their native language, residents speak Swahili, which is the national language. Sukuma people are famous for traditional ngoma (drum music) and dancing.

Dressing Culture

In Mwanza City women should try not to dress in what the local people might interpret as provocative which includes short skirts and shorts, transparent tops. Tanzanian women are very rarely to show their knees.  Same as with local men, you will find local men rarely wearing shorts or sleeveless shirts.

Schedule

The normal working day at TRHM is from Monday-Sunday. We start at 7:30am till 20:00pm during the working days as well as Saturday, on Sunday we work from 10:00am – 16:00 pm (This is only for the medical dispensary) in between there is a break for breakfast and lunch.

Day Off and After-Work Hours,

After work, volunteers can get together for sports, jogging, evening walk etc. For day off, they can visit friends, beaches, and go on safaris, have lunch and dinner at some nice hotels and restaurants around the city, and go for shopping at different places like Rock City Mall and other local shops around Mwanza City.

Local Trips

During day offs volunteers can organize for trips near City; they may prefer to go to Saanane Island, picnics, and other places for leisure.

Accommodation

Our organization is located at Nyasaka Street in Mwanza (Ilemela) where there is a hostel nearby (Kiota Hostel-Mwanza) and the public transport is available from the hostel to the nearby bus stand where you can walk up to the facility.

The rooms are well ventilated and secured. There is regular electrical supply, water supply and comprises of fan, bathroom/toilet, normal bed and double decker bed, mosquito net, bed sheets, pillow and cupboard.

The rooms are within fenced hostel and there is a guard at the gate. The accommodation is closer to TRHM office and City Centre.

Meals

There are nearby restaurants/cafeterias at TRHM office and the Hostel as well. The breakfast, lunch and dinner ranges from US $2- $4 per single meal.

Also volunteers can access vegetables and fruits at the market which is nearby the Office and Hostel as well where market is a walkable distance from Hostel and TRHM office.

Laundry

The volunteers can wash their own clothes or they can pay women who work at the Hostel to wash for them. The price ranges but doesn’t exceed US $ 5.00/apparel depends on the number and nature of the cloths.

Also there are machine laundry services in town and price starts from US $ 1.00 depending on the quantity of clothes.