GPSA

Global Health Travel Program

Do you want to:

o   Gain hands-on experience in an international setting with an emphasis on health?

o   Travel to an underserved community and learn how to make a positive impact?

o   Work alongside local healthcare professionals in offering health services?

o   Learn about social, economic, and human rights inequalities?

o   Strengthen your leadership abilities?

o   Become immersed in a culture different from your own?

o   Develop a new perspective about global health and international development?

o   Broaden your understanding of health-related careers?

Our Global Travel Programs offer a unique opportunity for participants to learn through hands-on-service. They will have direct access to the community, working alongside our local partners to offer clinical screenings and health education activities.

Prior to  site arrival, we  train participants in basic health screenings. By working in an underserved community, participants will gain a different perspective about how social, economic, and human rights inequities impact health accessibility and services in comparison to their own.

During the Program You Will

Work alongside healthcare professionals to provide aid to patients of all ages.

Lead health-related educational sessions at schools, community centers, individual homes, and more.

Host health fairs within the community to provide
on-site screenings and education.

Be fully-immersed in a cross-cultural exchange and learn about a new culture!

Want to join our travel program? See Our Upcoming Programs and Apply Today!

Travel Site Programs

"It has strengthened my opinion to become a pediatrician. I found that it was very rewarding and worthwhile and I really want to come back here as a doctor"
Hitoha
Thailand program participant

History

 In 1996, Guatemala emerged from a 36-year-long civil war. As a consequence, Guatemala’s young democratic tradition is tenuous. Although the country is rich in mineral, agricultural, and human resources, poverty is acute and particularly widespread in the countryside and among Indigenous communities (including the ones in which GPSA works). Rates of illiteracy, infant mortality, and malnutrition are among the region’s highest while life expectancy is among the lowest.

About the Program

Through our partnership with the Ministry of Health in Guatemala, participants are able to work in local health clinics , organize health fairs, and work in schools to teach children topics like hygiene, nutrition and maternal health. With this program, participants will get to experience Guatemala’s rich culture and beauty! Participants will have the opportunity to participate in cultural  activities that can include visiting the magnificent Lake Atitlan, strolling through markets that exhibit handwoven textiles and locally grown vegetables, weaving classes, chocolate making classes, or hiking in the mountainous area. The program includes language training, an intense course focused on Spanish or Mayan languages. Participants stay with host families, where they will live in small groups together with GPSA staff. Living with a host family creates a perfect atmosphere to practice a local language and learn and experience Guatemalan culture.

Participants receive hands-on experience by learning and conducting clinical services such as:

  • Screening for diabetes
  • Screening for high blood pressure
  • Reading vitals (temperature, oxygen levels, heart rate, respiration rate)
  • Screening for malnutrition by measuring body mass index (height and weight)
  • Vision exams

History

Belize, which was known as British Honduras until 1973, was the last British colony on the American mainland. The country achieved independence on September 21, 1981, but it has retained its historical link with the United Kingdom through membership in the Commonwealth.

Because of its proximity to Guatemala, there are many Central American and Mexican immigrants who have recently moved into this area seeking refuge from social unrest or civil wars.

About the Program

In Belize we partner with the Belizean Ministry of Health and work with community health workers during their home visits, organize health fairs, and work in schools to teach children on topics like hygiene, nutrition, and maternal health.

Participants receive hands-on experience by learning and conducting clinical services such as:

  • Screening for diabetes
  • Screening for high blood pressure
  • Reading vitals (temperature, oxygen levels, heart rate, respiration rate)
  • Screening for malnutrition by measuring body mass index (height and weight)
  • Vision exams

History

Williamson is a town of about 3,000 inhabitants deep in the beautiful Appalachian mountains of West Virginia, USA.  The  inhabitants have been devastated by natural disasters and economic hardship. Only recently has the city been protected by a floodwall in response to deadly flooding along the Tug Fork River in 1977 and again in 1984.  The local economy is largely fueled by coal mining, a rapidly declining industry which is severely impacting the community with higher rates of poverty and limiting accessibility to quality health care services.  While the community has faced many economic hardships, the culture in this area is warm and welcoming to all. With its small town lifestyle, you’ll always find a friendly face and enjoy the slower pace.

About the Program

This program is unique in that we work with community health workers to provide an array of health services.  Their primary patients are uninsured and receive support through government welfare programs. Other clinical activities include participating in educational sessions, attending home visits, organizing health fairs, and working at the Health & Wellness Center Clinics.

We also do cultural activities such as visiting museums, walking hiking trails, tasting local foods, and venturing around the community.

Participants receive hands-on experience by learning and conducting clinical services such as:

  • Screening for diabetes
  • Screening for high blood pressure
  • Reading vitals (temperature, oxygen levels, heart rate, respiration rate)
  • Screening for malnutrition by measuring body mass index (height and weight)

History

Both Thailand and Myanmar are beautiful Southeast Asian countries with rich cultures and histories dating back centuries. Thailand, officially called Siam until 1939, was never colonized by the Europeans and has been a monarchy for many centuries. Myanmar, historically known as Burma, has a troubled history, being colonized many times. It declared its independence shortly after World War II. Recent conflicts in Myanmar have led to an increase in the numbers of migrants from Myanmar to Thailand. Both the people from Thailand and Myanmar are predominantly Buddhist, which is reflected by the many impressive Buddhist temples that can be seen everywhere.

About the Program

GPSA works together with the Mae Tao Clinic, a private, donor-funded, non-governmental organization that provides healthcare to all people who are from Myanmar. Our clinical partners see over 100,000 patients per year. The clinic also runs boarding houses for migrant children and a Child Development Center to allow migrant children to access basic education. During the program, we conduct home visits in some of the mountainous communities. Also provide educational sessions on topics such as hygiene, sexual and reproductive health and rights, prevention on mosquito-born illnesses, and clinic-based pre-consultation screenings.

Participants receive hands-on experience by learning and conducting clinical services such as:

  • Screening for diabetes
  • Screening for high blood pressure
  • Reading vitals (temperature, oxygen levels, heart rate, respiration rate)
  • Screening for malnutrition by measuring body mass index (height and weight)
  • Vision exams