We’ve been selected to received a major grant to promote long-term volunteering in Kambia.

The Health Partnership Scheme (HPS) is a UK DfID initiative with The Tropical Health and Education Trust (THET) to build the long-term capacity of healthcare institutions overseas to deliver a better service to the communities they serve. We are one of four organisations in the UK selected to run three-year programmes to enable UK health staff to volunteer in developing countries for a minimum of six months at a time.

Our grant will provide funding for up to seven UK volunteers a year to work in Kambia to support the health services across the district. The project has been developed by Dr Stacey Mearns and Dr Clare Adams who both worked at the Kambia district hospital last year.

When asked about her experiences in Kambia, and how they relate to our HPS programme, Stacey said: “This project will enable volunteers to make significant contributions to health within Kambia in a sustainable manner. Volunteering on a project like this is not a one-way exchange. The experience offers insights and the gain of new perspectives and skills for life and work. My time spent volunteering challenged my concept of health, enabling me to see health in a much broader context. In addition it enabled me to develop a more extensive range of skills that are directly transferable back in the UK. I would strongly urge people thinking of doing this sort of work to get involved”.

This project has three core elements: teaching and training, clinical support and quality improvement activities. We believe that the combination of these activities will improve the performance of local health staff, strengthening the health system through improved delivery of care and thus contribute to improved health outcomes for the local population in Kambia.

Dr Clare Adams at Kambia Hospital, 2011.

Find out more about our HPS Volunteer Programme.