Health, Sanitation & Hygiene Education
Education is the most sustainable way in which we can positively change public health. We need international volunteers and interns to work in rural communities, spreading public health awareness to women’s groups, youth groups and schools, with the support of local volunteers and translators.
One of the major barriers towards improved levels of health, sanitation and hygiene in Nepal’s rural communities is the lack of awareness among local populations of health, sanitation and hygiene. Many community members are illiterate and this has prevented them understanding and adopting proper hygiene and safety methods in their day to day lives.
The principle objective of Track Nepal is the empowerment of marginalised, rural communities. Health and education are two of the four founding principles upon which our work is based.
Volunteer or complete an internship on Health, Sanitation and Hygiene Education program and help to develop the skills of rural communities in nutrition, personal hygiene, sanitation, addictions, mental health, sexual health and reproductive health. You will work with groups of women and children and in government schools to provide guidance on current health practices and build awareness of major health risks. You will also work to mobilise groups of children and youths to act as advocates for health, sanitation and hygiene within the community, organising rallies or performing street drama in order to convey crucial messages to the entire community.
As a volunteer, you too will become part of the local community; living with a Nepali host family you will be immersed in the rich culture and language of Nepal.
By providing health, hygiene and sanitation education you will be making a sustainable difference to the lives of hundreds of Nepali people. You will typically work up to six hours a day, five to six days a week.
Throughout your placement you will have the full support of VIN. Your safety is our highest priority. On arrival you will be greeted at Kathmandu Tribhuvan International Airport and transported to your hotel (alternative arrangements can be made for those already in Nepal prior to the start of their placement). You will then receive a comprehensive three-day induction, during which time you will be provided with information about your particular placement as well as general information, including basic Nepalese language and culture. This is also a good time to mix with other volunteers or interns who may be great sight-seeing companions and a source of support during your volunteer placement.
During the induction you will be accommodated in a hotel. However, a large part of the Track Nepal experience comes from the immersion of a home stay with a Nepalese host family. While this is an essential part of the experience we also recognise that it can be a challenging one, becoming part of a new culture and becoming accustomed to facilities that will be more basic than those you are used to. However, all our host families are experienced in accommodating volunteers – although their ability to speak English will vary – and you will have 24 hour access to contact and support from our staff members during your placement.
Care for the Elderly
Each of us will grow old. We can only hope that as we begin to slow down we have sufficient resources, financial and human, to ensure this time is dignified, without anxiety and deprivation. Nepal’s elderly enter old age in poor health without money or material assets to support them. We seeks skilled and passionate volunteers to join care for the elderly project to support elderly people at their old age and make them feel they aren’t alone.
In Nepal, those of 60 years and over are considered elderly. The majority of elderly people are living in poverty due to lack of resources. They are suffering the cumulative effects of a lifetime of deprivation, lack of education, poor health and nutrition, low social status, discrimination and restriction of mobility.
Traditionally, it was the responsibility of family members to care for the elderly within the extended family home. But, as society begins to change, families have become much smaller, women are beginning to work outside the home and many family members move from rural Nepal to seek employment in the city or abroad. With only one elderly care centre in Nepal, Pashupati Briddha Asram, the country has no workforce experienced in caring for the elderly.
We are seeking experienced volunteers to work with the elderly in Nepal and pass on their knowledge to local people. Your knowledge will be vital in creating a stronger care system for the future. Volunteers who have no experience but much enthusiasm are also welcome. Dependent upon your experience, you will help to nurse sick elderly people, perform health checks, provide first aid, work as a care taker, assist with food preparation and sanitation and organise recreational activities.
During your placement you will live with a Nepali host family. This will enable you to become immersed in Nepali language and culture and experience the backdrop against which the elderly you care for have survived.
Waste management is a major public health and environmental concern across Nepal. We seeks volunteers and interns to work in rural communities to help establish best practices for waste management and develop effective and sustainable ways to keep the community clean to make the best of beautiful Nepal. Nepal’s ability to cope with solid waste is inadequate. The Solid Waste Management Act 2011 placed responsibility for the dealing with general waste with municipalities and the action which each municipality takes varies. As at 2012 only 30 percent of households were segregating their waste. With limited rubbish removal, some of which is from open dumps at the side of roads, and no significant recycling industry, practices such as burning and open dumping are still wide spread. When collected, waste is finally deposited at crude dumping sites, where it is left untreated, regardless of the public health risk it presents. At Track Nepal our overriding objective is the empowerment of marginalised, rural communities. Health and the provision of a basic infrastructure form two of the foundations of our community work and effective waste management is crucial for success. Volunteers and interns will work within the community to raise awareness of the advantages of a clean environment. You will help to establish best practice for waste management, educating on composting, recycling and safe disposal, while helping to mobilise the community to embrace a ‘No Litter’ campaign to effect sustainable change. While you work with the community you will live with them, hosted by a Nepali family. Here, you will be immersed in the culture and community you are giving your time to help.