Medical Doctor Volunteer

Caritas de esperanza - Quito, Ecuador
Quick Facts: Placement ID: IND-752 Location: Quito, Ecuador Sector: Health Care Category: Medicine Min Duration: 4 weeks Lodging: Host Family / Lodge Language: Intermediate
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Volunteer Job Description

Each of the projects of Caritas of Hope, allows volunteers to find some way to help the most needy, establishing bonds of solidarity and hope through their work, which is an extremely important contribution to the poorest communities, lacking education, no employment opportunities and living in poverty, exposed to the worst living conditions.

The Caritas de Esperanza Organization is looking for medical doctor volunteers who would work at their Otavalo Clinic which is a clinic with few resources and staff.

A medical doctor volunteer at this clinic would have similar duties to those in his/her native country. They would be required to diagnose patients conditions in the usual manner of examination and tests when necessary. Refer patients when required to specialists who focus in specific medical areas, such as cardiology etc.

A medical doctor volunteer would be expected to work as part of a team alongside other healthcare professionals, to discuss care options for patients and their families in order to obtain the best possible treatment for said patients.

A medical doctor volunteer may also have the opportunity to share some medical procedures and treatments currently in use in their native country.

The scope of experience that a doctor would obtain at this placement is unlimited. It all would depend on the doctor's initiative and enthusiasm towards his/her medical contribution at this clinic.

The workload is tremendous and any doctor who can volunteer his/her services for four weeks or more would be making a great contribution to the medical care of the poor people in this section of Ecuador.

Volunteer Tasks Required

Clinic Care

A medical doctor volunteer would be expected to perform routine medical duties at the clinic, as well as any necessary documentation this involved. The doctor would be assisted by staff if there were any language difficulties.

Health Education

A medical doctor volunteer may be asked to help promote health education in conjunction with other health professionals by developing preventative medical programs for patients and also for the communities in the surrounding areas.

Medical Presentations

Medical doctor volunteers may be asked to conduct presentations to the medical staff in Ecuador, (if time was available for all concerned). These presentations may discuss the different approaches to the treatment of medical conditions in their native country in comparison to those in Ecuador or they may wish to discuss new methods of treatment that are currently being tried in their native country and the results they are experiencing etc.

Consultations

Medical doctor volunteers may be required to conduct consultations with other medical staff and/or with patients to discuss different approaches to medical conditions that may be most appropriate for individual patients.

Doctor Volunteer will be doing daily rounds in the Clinic Otavalo with the nurses to check on patients and making sure everything is running perfect at the clinic . Making sure your patients are receiving the medicine they need and the assistance too.

Host Organization Details

Caritas de esperanza

The Faces of Hope -- Caritas de Esperanza is a private non-profit community based organization "Hope Azama " in Otavalo, Imbabura Province in Ecuador.

Caritas de Esperanza promotes alternative solutions to the problems of marginalization, extreme poverty, malnutrition, poor health, lack of educational facilities, poor mental health and bad environmental conditions caused primarily by unequal distribution of economic resources in Ecuador to rural and urban communities.

The lack of employment opportunities have forced parents to emigrate to countries offering better opportunities, leaving their children to fend for themselves, which often means they are left in the care of a brother or sister no older than 10 years old. If parents do get jobs in the immediate area such as the "flower farms" they are forced to leave their children locked in their rooms all day, (due to lack of child care facilities), while they work from 7a.m. to 4p.m.

Another factor contributing to extreme poverty in rural communities is the lack of educational programs that teach family planning, which has led to unwanted pregnancies and the number of family members increasing. Today, families in these communities are composed of 7 to 10 members who live in humble houses without sanitation or basic services and have a monthly salary of 176 USD for support.

One of the most pressing concerns is the minimal opportunities for the children to access a public education, especially after completing their primary education. Due to lack of money it is impossible for them to continue on to their secondary education, which forces them to work in servitude or move to neighbouring countries such as Colombia or Venezuela, where they work in sweatshops or beg in illegal groups.

Malnutrition caused by poor diets, ( daily diet : bread in the morning, soup with a lot of grain that is grown on their farms at lunch and a cup of tea at night, with little access to fruits or vegetables), hinders physical and mental development plus learning ability and thus causes a high number of drop outs each year. Illiteracy in the adult population is 78%, which contributes to the fact that many parents do not support an education for their children, nor understand the fundamental value of educating them.

Moreover, the parasitic disease caused by the absence of a proper water systems contributes to the deterioration of the health of the population. Lack of economic resources also prevents them from accessing scientific medicine to prevent diseases. "Quedándoles" is their only recourse --- "witches" who cheat them and worsen their health.

Domestic violence and alcohol have destroyed many homes, causing imprisonment and other problems that makes their situations even more difficult.

Finally, (despite living in a beautiful landscape surrounded by nature), due to lack of knowledge the people do not respect or feel the responsibility to protect their environment which causes erosion and infertility of their land.

When They Were Founded

Caritas de Esperanza was founded October 1st 2009 by Katerine Vinueza , David De La Torre and Margot Cifuentes. They thought it was necessary to create a foundation that sought to improve the living conditions of people in rural communities of Otavalo. They started by fundraising some money so they could open institutions to take in kids and people who needed help.

How Are They Funded

Caritas de Esperanza receives funding mainly from two companies : Iam Formacion and Gabinete de Empresas Garbem. The rest of the funding comes from volunteers and individuals who want to help the people in Otavalo.

Donation Requests

Clothing for children from ages new born to twelve years of age, paper, crayons, coloring pencils, coloring books, pencils, unfolded boxes, toys, mattresses, cabinets and games would all be greatly appreciated.

Placement Location Information

Quito, Ecuador

Caritas de Esperanza is located in the small town of Otavalo, but it has all the services of a big city such as; supermarkets, hospitals, restaurants and bars. The majority of the people at this organization and in the surrounding area speak only Spanish, so volunteers may need to hone their language skills.

The organization always appreciates volunteers as well as donations of school supplies or even medicines, to help with their daily work. Things like notebooks, pencils, erasers, colored pencils, cardboard and paper are always in demand, as well as sponsors to support the computer center where the children do their homework and communicate through the internet.

Transfer From BaseCamp

Buses depart Quito’s main terminal every 20 minutes or so and charge two dollars for the two to three hour ride to Otavalo. This is the only bus company allowed into Otavalo’s bus terminal. Someone from the organization will be waiting for you at the bus station to take you to your placement.

Distance & Time

Distance from BaseCamp: 110km
Travel Time from BaseCamp: 3:10

Weather in the Area

Because Ecuador is located on the Equator line, Quito's weather is very unique. Due to the Equator, Ecuador has no seasons; there is summer and winter. The year has six months winter and six months summer but the number of months for each changes from time to time.

Because Quito is so high up in the mountains, the sun is very strong and the wind blows really hard; it can get pretty cold at night. Quito always has a temperate climate with temperatures ranging from 10 to 27 ° C.

City/Village Description

Quito or also called "Luz de America", is the capital of Ecuador; a country located in South America, on the Equator line. Quito is considered one of the most beautiful cities in South America because of its amazing colonial architecture, historical sites, fantastic landscapes and panoramic views all surrounded by incredible mountains, rivers, parks and volcanoes.

Quito was founded in the 16th century by the Incas Tribe and is located at an altitude of 2,850 meters above sea level.

Centro de Quito, (colonial city) is the largest and best conserved colonial city in South America; this is why the UNESCO named it a "World Cultural Heritage Site" in 1978. The city's structure on the 320 hectare compound is an outstanding example of superb architecture from the sixteenth to the twentieth century; surrounded by volcanic stone with very narrow streets within, (built stone by stone), there is much to see.

The historic centre of Quito has ancient colonial homes, priceless churches, chapels, monasteries, convents, as well as plazas, museums and republican buildings with interesting architecture.

Once outside of the historical centre of the city, Quito takes on a completely different personality in the “new town” where many high rise and government buildings are found.

Though Quito is old and historic, the public transportation is fairly efficient and the city is served by a network of buses that travel throughout most of the areas; it is a cheap way of getting around. Since the city is very long and narrow, it is divided into three zones and many buses run in each zone of the city.

Currently, the heart of the capital is full of vigour and culture, such as "Heritage Nights" where citizens and visitors can enjoy the unique attractions in the, "jewel in the crown of Ecuador", through images and videos.

Nearest Medical Clinic

Clìnica Pichincha
Paez N22-160 y Veintimilla
Quito
TEL 1: 593 2 2998-777

Placement Address

Caritas de esperanza
La Esperanza De Azama, + 593, Otavalo
Quito
Ecuador

Accommodation and Meals

All of our volunteers begin their stay in Ecuador at our BaseCamp Center in Quito. Given that this placement is more than a 1 hour 15 minute commute from BaseCamp, volunteers here will be living with a host family after your orientation. Living with a host family is an awesome experience for a person looking to really experience Ecuador and its culture.

The following information outlines a brief description of life at BaseCamp and also what someone can expect living with a host family in Ecuador.

If you think that living with a host family is not for you, then this placement might not be the best fit with what you are looking for. You should try completing our application. It's totally free and will allow our team in Ecuador to come up with a list of exactly which placements they would reccommend for you based on your personal preferences, background, skills and interests.

BaseCamp Ecuador

BaseCamp Ecuador
BaseCamp Ecuador Address

Juan Rodriguez E8 - 72 Y
6 De Diciembre
Quito, Ecuador

BaseCamp Ecuador Contact Details

Tel: 593 2-254-7737 (Guest House Jazmines)
Mobile: 593-0-998-221-438

BaseCamp Ecuador is located in the trendy Mariscal district of Quito. Within easy walking distance of banks, restaurants, internet cafes and more; BaseCamp in Quito is perfectly situated for any need. Whether you are taking advantage of the rich and vibrant night life of La Mariscal or visiting a local market, BaseCamp Ecuador is always just a few minutes away.

There are six dormitory style guest rooms and five wash-rooms. Pillows, sheets and blankets are provided. There are two common areas on the main floor, including a small resource centre, containing books, magazines, games and other Ecuadorian publications. As well there is a large selection of local movies and documentaries which are available for guest viewing. In addition to the two common areas, BaseCamp Quito has a rooftop terrace, the perfect spot to watch the street come awake with a morning cup of coffee, or spend an afternoon relaxing in the sun.

BaseCamp Quito is also the orientation and training centre for international volunteers visiting Ecuador. In addition to accommodation and meals, BaseCamp Quito also provides volunteers with orientation, Spanish Language training (1 - 8 weeks), placement consultation and work plan seminars, as well as follow up and continued support while volunteers are at their placements. All of these services are available to guests who are interested.

Living With a Host Family in Ecuador

Living with a host family in Ecuador is a fantastic way to gain a deep understanding of and appreciation for the people and customs of the country. Each home-stay will provide a bed and three meals per day for our volunteers. The majority of host families offer private rooms with only one or two volunteers living with the family.

In the case of a volunteer lodge or ranger station (which is often the only option for placements within a National Park), volunteers will be living in dormitory type accommodation and meals will be provided in a mess hall or dining area.

Living with a host family can greatly enhance your performance at your placement. For one, it will have a huge influence on the speed with which you gain familiarity with the local language. This, along with your deeper understanding of cultural practices and beliefs that you are likely to gain in this environment, can go a long way to improving or strengthening your relationships with your team mates at work. Furthermore, a significant percentage of our host families are closely affiliated with the organizations with which our volunteers work. As such, even the evening meal or hanging out around the house can become valuable time during which volunteers can share their ideas and continue their support of their host organization.

All of this being said, living with a host family is not for everyone. It is very important for volunteers to honor the house rules in their host family and to be punctual. Also, depending on how remote your placement location, host families can be very rustic. Our staff in country can give you a better idea of what exactly you can expect from a host family in any particular community. However, in general, if these things sound like they might pose a challenge for you, we strongly suggest that you look at a placement within commuting distance from BaseCamp Ecuador.

How the Program Works

Our program structure and costing is completely flexible which lets our volunteers ensure that they only pay for exactly the degree of support that they want.

Option 1 - Free Services

Some volunteers prefer to coordinate their own accommodation, meals and other support while overseas.

Anyone is welcome to use our volunteer placement search tool to help in finding a placement that is well suited to their interests. Once someone finds a placement that they wish to work with, they are welcome to make all the rest of their arrangmeents on their own.

As well, our team of staff overseas are often able to offer a few helpful pointers for volunteers 'doing it on their own'. Just send us an email with your questions and we will put you in touch with our team abroad. We only ask that you keep your requests fairly general, as this type of advice is exactly how our team earn their living. :)

Option 2 - Placement Support - 250 USD

Other volunteers would like assistance in selecting and confirming their placement, but they plan to manage their own accommodation and other expenses on their own.

These volunteers have the option of choosing to only have our assistance with selecting and confirming their placement. This option also includes ongoing placement support while abroad, so a volunteer would be able to ask our team for help if things at their placement were not working out.

In providing Placement Support, our team works with each volunteer through email, telephone and either Skype or Google Hangouts, to ensure that each volunteer has a clear understanding of their placement options. Our in-country staff will put together a custom list of placement options for each volunteer that they believe are the most appropriate matches with the volunteer's background, skills and interests. Then each volunteer can work with our team both in Canada and abroad to go through each of the options and narrow-down their selection.

Option 3 - Full Program Support

For most volunteers who are volunteering for less than a year, they are looking for an option that includes their accommodation, meals, airport reception, country and program orientation and placement support. This is what our Program Fees are designed for.

We are proud of how over the years we have ensured that our program fees are amoungst the most reasonable of any program in the world while we continue to provide exceptional volunteer support both at home and abroad.

Our Program Fees and listings of what these do and do not include are listed below:

Program Fees

Program Fees - Ecuador

  Registration Fee
250
 
  1 Week
395
 
  2 Weeks
620
 
  3 Weeks
844
 
  4 Weeks
1,068
 
  5 Weeks
1,243
 
  6 Weeks
1,418
 
  7 Weeks
1,593
 
  8 Weeks
1,768
 
 
 
  Additional Weeks
175
 

Ecuador wildlife and conservation placements require an additional $7 USD per day fee to cover park fees and accommodation. All program fees are listed in US Dollars.

What is Included
  • Pre-Departure support
  • Placement consulation
  • Airport reception & transfer
  • 2 Day orientation
  • Accommodation (BaseCamp or host family)
  • Breakfast and dinner
  • Emergency & placement support

What is Not Included
    Before Departure
  • International flight
  • Travel medical insurance
  • Visa costs where required
  • Work permits where required
    While Overseas
  • Daily transportation to and from placement
  • Transport to airport on departure
  • Placement fees if requried


Program Dates


Our regularly scheduled program start dates are the first Friday of each month, every month of the year. We strongly recommend beginning your program on one of these dates as this will allow you to go through our orientation alongside other international volunteers.

If you would prefer, our application will also allow you to select a custom start date for your program. Keep in mind that there is an additional fee for a custom start date which ranges from 50 to 75 USD.

Apr 05, 2019 May 03, 2019 Jun 07, 2019
Jul 05, 2019 Aug 02, 2019 Sep 06, 2019
Oct 04, 2019 Nov 01, 2019 Dec 06, 2019
Jan 03, 2020 Feb 07, 2020 Mar 06, 2020
Apr 03, 2020 May 01, 2020 Jun 05, 2020
Jul 03, 2020 Aug 07, 2020 Sep 04, 2020
Oct 02, 2020 Nov 06, 2020 Dec 04, 2020
Jan 01, 2021 Feb 05, 2021 Mar 05, 2021

PLEASE NOTE:

These dates are the day that volunteers should plan to arrive on the ground in country. We can accommodate arrivals in-country at any time day or night on these dates.

Give us a Call
Canada / USA 866-646-4693 (toll free)
UK 866-646-4693 (toll free)
Australia 866-646-4693 (toll free)
International 613-353-3000
Send us a Message