DocTours Newsletter June 2013
Kung Hei Fat Choi – we wish everyone a happy and prosperous Year of the Snake!
What’s hot? Cambodia
Its eight o clock in the morning and hundreds of kids of all ages are queuing to enter the gates of their school where they are learning to speak English. Some live many kilometres away and have walked there. Some have uniforms however most do not and some of the lucky ones have shoes! Just imagine the rush and screams of joy as the kids jostle to line up in their respective class rows, right hand extended to touch the shoulder of the child in front, to be greeted by the Head Teacher for their morning assembly. The cheeky ones mimic and giggle. A slightly out of tune school anthem is sung in their native Khmer language, and then row by row, class by class, they march to their respective classrooms. Some of the students have just one writing book and a pencil, maybe a well-worn canvas bag. Each classroom has a blackboard, chalk, wooden chairs and tables and not much else. A teacher and a volunteer assistant teacher enter to a chorus of “good morning teacher” – not quite in unison, and in quite broken English. Today’s lesson is dictation. After an hour of class, the kids take a break and play in a small yard or gather around a visitor who has a camera. Their smiles and enthusiasm are huge and their laughter is infectious. At their lunch break they run off to the tuck shop for slices of fresh mango with chilli (there is no junk food here).
Karin and I are in Siem Reap Cambodia and are very lucky to have been invited to visit one of many non-government organisations (‘NGO’s) who strive to provide a better life for the youth of Cambodia. Here they will learn to speak English, learn a trade such as hospitality, sewing or IT in anticipation of one day getting a job in the booming tourism and hotel sectors. As well as the school, there is a medical clinic and an outreach program which looks after seven surrounding villages and delivers rice once a month to impoverished families. This is free of charge to all those who live in the surrounding catchment area and is funded by the ongoing generosity of various western tour operators and kindhearted individuals.
They need GPs, Nurses and Specialists to volunteer to keep these families healthy. Just 2 – 4 weeks will make a difference. Non-medical volunteers are also very welcome to help in the classrooms.
What’s also hot? Tanzania
Now is the time to book if you wish to volunteer in Tanzania or Kenya for two reasons.
The first, of course, is the volunteer program itself. In Tanzania we have placements not only in the city of Dar es Salaam, but also in the townships of Moshi (Kilimanjaro) and Arusha (both gateways to Safari and the great migration). In Moshi we have a government hospital with very high attendance rates. This is a great option for gynos, midwives and nurses as children and pregnant women get free assistance there. GPs and nurses are also very much in demand and surgeons are highly regarded.
In Arusha, a private clinic (located a few minutes away from a Masai camp) has general outpatient and inpatient services, operating theatres that cater to orthopaedics, obstetrics, gyno as well as general surgery. It has only one full time GP and six nurses seeing around 70–90 patients a day. They really need extra help! Plan a two week Volunteer Program and a one week Serengeti or Masai Mara Safari – Just Brilliant!!
The second great reason is that June – September is the best time to see the incredible migration. Each year the millions of wildebeest and zebra follow their usual path so that the Guides have a really good idea as to where to find them. We can book your place on a Safari but hurry they do fill fast.
Another incentive is that Emirates Airlines fly into Dar es Salaam and Nairobi with just one stop in Dubai. Currently the fares are very inexpensive with huge savings. Also, with the pending alliance between Qantas and Emirates, you will be able to earn points on your Qantas Frequent Flyer Program and vice versa.
Don’t just picture David Attenborough’s Africa – BE THERE !
What’s new? Namibia
We have a remote rural medical clinic that provides primary health care to the local community. They will warmly welcome general practitioners, paediatricians and those with an interest in public health, emergency medicine and/or tropical medicine to work in their busy clinic and join the outreach trips to surrounding vilages and schools.
Ask us for more details …….
By the way …..
Just two weeks of your time can make the world of difference. Most of our programs are now priced from A$1,150.00 and includes your placement, arrival transfer, orientation and 24 hour support, two weeks accommodation (basic level of comfort) and meals.
We are happy to arrange additional touring and travel arrangements, upgraded accommodation, visas and travel insurance – just ask!
The AMOS Fund – update
CONGRATULATIONS to the lucky donors to the Amos Fund who won one of our two fantastic prizes. Dr. P Caska won the beautiful framed picture kindly donated by the Pro Hart Gallery and Dr. B Wyeth won a bottle of Chateau Mont-Redon, Chateauneuf du Pape, generously donated by Dr. Richard Barnett.
Of course, a huge thank you must go to all the very kind contributors who continue to support the AMOS FUND. We are very appreciative indeed. Pictured here is some of the team at the medical clinic in Siem Reap with the medical supplies donated by the AMOS Fund and the General Practice Cremorne.
If you would like more information or to see the achievements of the AMOS Fund, please visit the website: http://www.amosfund.org.au/