Nashua, NH (PRWEB) March 07, 2014
A contingent of student nurses and faculty from Rivier University recently traveled to Dakar, Senegal in the inaugural trip of Rivier’s Institute for Global Health.
The Institute for Global Health began as a collaborative project between Rivier University, the Sisters of the Presentation of Mary, and the communities of Nashua, N.H. and Dakar, Senegal. The vision of the Institute is to connect and support communities by creating and sustaining care centers, providing health care and educational training, English as a Second Language programming, spiritual guidance, and support for micro-lending/business development programs. The Institute’s scope has expanded to include clinical outreach in other countries and it is anticipated that the project will expand to include business and education students.
The group, which included undergraduate and graduate nursing students and faculty advisors, traveled to Senegal for a 10-day clinical immersion experience, working side by side with local healthcare staff in a regional hospital. All were licensed RNs.
“The Institute for Global Health participates in Rivier’s mission of ‘transforming hearts and minds to serve the world’ by creating a platform of global health programs that promote communication, understanding, partnerships, and health-oriented immersion experiences for faculty, staff, students, and the related community,” said Associate Vice President for Global Engagement Mark Meehan. “Programs like this are a one-of-a-kind opportunity for our students and staff.”
While in Senegal, basic health care was provided by Rivier undergraduate and graduate students through a partnership with the Sisters of the Presentation of Mary’s clinical site in the small town of Ziguinchor, in southern Senegal. They participated in births (breach, Cesarean, and natural), and treated infants and children.
“Throughout the trip, they engaged, processed and learned,” said Meehan. “They cared for infants in the ICU, held the hands of mothers giving birth, and learned from a culture that views death as normal and life as beautiful.”
The trip is the first of many over the next 12 months under the umbrella of Rivier’s Institute of Global Health. In March, a second group will travel to Senegal and in May, a group of faculty, students and alumni will travel to China. The China trip has a few remaining openings.