According to Iqaluit Dental Clinic, many unprivileged and non-developed countries lack a proper healthcare system, including dentistry. Becoming an overseas dental volunteer can allow you to help those in need and put your expertise and experience as a doctor to good use. However, becoming a dentist without borders is not practical, even temporarily without aid from legitimate organizations. That’s why it is important to understand what the practice involves before you consider it.
Here are a few things that you should expect as an overseas dental volunteer:
1. Arrival and orientation– Generally, volunteer programs are available year-round except for some programs. Thus, you can set the program start date according to your convenience. The organization will take care of your needs which will be included in the program fees. You could even opt for a customized arrival plan which will include pick-up from the airport, bus station, or local hotel.
The orientation will involve acclimation tours of the local town or city, details of the program location, accommodation neighbourhood, map description, and more.
2. Communication while overseas – Generally, even rural areas are supposed to have a working mobile phone service which you can use to connect to the internet. However, if you visit an urban location, you can expect the home stays or hotels to offer you Wi-Fi access which you can use to easily connct with your family members via skype or Facetime. Alternatively, you can visit a cyber cafe and access the internet at an hourly fee.
3. Safety and security – Most medical volunteers have to visit some of the most remote regions of the world and as a result, safety, health, and security always remain a top concern. That is why it is crucial to select organizations that have overseas staff and support from the local staff who can foster local partnerships and host family relationships to ensure volunteers experience a safe trip abroad.
For instance, the local staff can keep the organization updated on the local conditions and select suitable site locations which have easy access to essential services such as transportation, banking, medical, communication, postal, and local markets.
4. Accommodation – Volunteers will be provided with a pre-departure guide that will include information about the packing list, language, customs, visa requirements, vaccination, security risks, and more. They will also be provided with information on emergency contact information, the supply and donation list, accommodation details, and arrival details.
Volunteers can choose to stay at handpicked host family residences, local volunteer guesthouses, and project dorms. These will include comfortable living conditions and acceptable standards of hygiene, cleanliness, and access to facilities such as the telephone and the internet.
Iqaluit Dental Clinic suggests you join a reputable not-for-profit organization that makes international volunteer travel possible for every medical professional where it is required. As an overseas dental volunteer, you will not earn any money. Instead, you will have to spend money on travel, accommodation, lodging, food, and more. Thus, it is also an important factor to consider if you want to become a dentist without borders.