This spring, Castleton nursing students will once again extend their influence and civic-mindedness across international borders. For the second consecutive year, 17 senior nursing students will participate in the Global Brigades medical mission to Honduras.
In conjunction with the local chapter of Global Brigades, NY-VT Nurses Unite, the students, accompanied by faculty member Margaret Young, will spend approximately one week in Honduras. With the task of providing sustainable medical and dental care to the local communities, the group will seek to deliver various healthcare services to more than 1,000 people.
“Each patient will receive a physician consultation, teeth cleaning, and fluoride treatment, as well as have access to pap smears, prostate exams and restorative dental care,” said nursing senior Amanda Hier.
While immersed in the local community, the group will become more familiar with the health issues of the area and work with professionals to learn proper treatments techniques.
Additionally, students will use their knowledge to educate locals on how to best prevent common health issues.
“These brigades provide each volunteer with the opportunity to make a tangible impact on a specific community while gaining real life experience in the field of international medicine and dentistry,” Hier said.
Classmate Heidi Gillespie says the group plans to take their service beyond the medical requirements within the clinics by bringing Polaroid cameras to capture instant family photographs of the community members.
Several days will also be spent teaching healthcare education at a nearby orphanage.
“In addition to the clinics in the villages, we will also visit an orphanage where we will provide basic health care education about hand washing, dental care and basic health care,” she said.
In preparation of the brigade, Hier and Gillespie have co-chaired the fundraising initiatives that will help cover the cost of the trip, flights and the medical supplies to be used.
To raise funds the group has already made great efforts including a t-shirt sale and basket raffle, as well as placed out jars around campus for spare change labeled “Nickels for Nurses.”
For more information about NY-VY Nurses Unite or to help support the 2015 Honduras Medical Brigade, visit Empowered.org.