The knowledge acquired is intensified in the case of professional volunteer programs such as working in health centers. For this reason, we talked with Fernando, the director of one of the health centers we work with, about the role of the volunteers in the project. Fernando has always worked with a focus on prevention and promotion in public health, and he wants volunteers to be part of it.
Volunteers can circulate through medical offices in all areas: in this case, volunteers are mainly observers, where their role is to analyze and reflect on medical practices and care. But the most important thing both for Fernando and Voluntario Global is that volunteers can be part of the health promotion and prevention activities that break with hegemonic medical practices.
Keep in mind that this Health Center cares for patients at the first level of sanitary assistance, they don’t cover emergencies. Above all, they always involve the community. Therefore, the promotion staff organizes campaigns and workshops for the community. They visit their homes to understand the social and economical root of health issues, and to help more effectively. They can demonstrate that scientific and popular knowledge can have a greater impact if they work together.
The main idea is that volunteers can be part of all that. You can work with dengue, HIV, syphilis, diabetes, childhood rights, sexual and reproductive rights campaigns and workshop. You can also be part of the community network meetings, the staff meetings and not only to listen, but your opinion will also be taken into account.
As a volunteer, you will be working at the health center, but not only inside its facilities, you will get a broad perspective of how is it to work alongside the community and feel part of it.