The general health of the average Fijian is pretty good. Most youngsters are interested in sports and they begin their training at an early age. However, as they get older, women tend to become obese after the births of their children.
Since most of the local population live in the villages, they have little or no knowledge of hygiene and diet. This leads to a wide range of diseases such as high blood sugar, cholesterol, hypertension etc. The other common diseases are skin eruptions or lesions, urinary infections, gum disease and heart disease.
Our gap year volunteer in Fiji healthcare education initiative is in its infancy and requires the skills of both established medical and healthcare professionals and those who are interested in teaching basic first-aid and personal hygiene.
This need for having project participants on either end of the medical spectrum arises due to the great extremes in hygiene and health practices. Apart from needing qualified professionals in order to conduct health camps and dental checkups, we also need participants who can educate people in the areas of basic first-aid and personal hygiene such as washing hands, brushing teeth and general cleanliness. This works towards the prevention of many avoidable health problems and easily communicable diseases.
As a participant of this project, you will support healthcare campaigns in local schools around Pacific Harbour by actively teaching the importance of basic hygiene – emphasising brushing teeth correctly, washing hands and general body cleanliness.
Many of the daily routines that we carry out without thinking are not common practices with the children you will meet, but starting simple education early can go a long way in terms of future healthcare. If you have a medical background, check-up clinics for local children and adults can be organized with your help.
During the morning, a local doctor will meet you and explain to you all the various medical aspects as well as the medical needs of the local community. Later you will be taken to the local government schools for an awareness campaign, involving health and hygiene teaching to the children on a daily basis. You’ll work for around four hours a day.
On the last Wednesday of every month, in collaboration with the local team of doctors, a general health check-up camp is organised for villagers. Free medicines and treatment is available for everyone.
***This schedule can be changed and/or amended depending on weather conditions, local conditions and unforeseen circumstances***