New Year, New OpportunitiesJan 12, 2021
The new year is finally upon us, and we at FIMRC could not be more excited for the opportunities on the horizon. Throughout 2020, FIMRC was significantly impacted by the halt placed on international travel, and with this, our team worked hard to adapt our experiences to the virtual world. We launched our virtual volunteer opportunities to continue providing care to our project sites worldwide, and we’re bringing these programs into the new year with some exciting changes! We have adjusted our virtual programs to provide participants with greater versatility and flexibility that work with their busy lifestyle.
FIMRC’s virtual programs allow participants to learn about the field of global health while also connecting with fellow volunteers, FIMRC staff, and experts in the field. According to Madeleine Randolet, FIMRC’s Director of Global Operations, “FIMRC wanted to provide the opportunity for people to have a more in-depth understanding of topics that interest them. Specifically, in global health.”
FIMRC now offers three Virtual Volunteer Programs for those eager to learn more about the field while also granting them the flexibility to work at their own pace and in conjunction with their schedule.
Virtual Global Health Volunteer Experience: This is FIMRC's most versatile and flexible program. "You can start at one week of volunteering and go as long as you'd like," Madeleine explains. Those who participate in this virtual program will have the opportunity to work hands-on with FIMRC staff to develop a project that directly impacts site initiatives at the FIMRC site of their choosing. In addition to this program, volunteers are given the option to add FIMRC's Virtual Clinical Observation Opportunities. "We're excited to be able to offer clinical observation opportunities in addition to the regular program," says Madeleine. Volunteers will have the option to choose whether they participate in the program alone, whether they participate in only the clinical observations, or whether they participate in both. Our Virtual Global Health Volunteer Experience is made for those looking for a flexible program that will give them an in-depth look at the field of global health from the perspective of a particular FIMRC site.
Virtual Global Health Leadership Training: This month-long program was designed for high school students interested in the field of global health. This virtual experience provides students with information on the various career paths and opportunities available in the field while also outlining each profession's differences. "This program is a four-week experience geared toward high school students," Madeleine says. "Participants will learn about global health themes, explore the various careers within the healthcare field, understand the differences and similarities between professions, all while learning about FIMRC's project sites."
Virtual Global Health Fellowship: FIMRC's virtual fellowship provides the most in-depth view of the world of global health through a four-week experience that can be expanded to eight weeks. "If you choose to participate in both sessions, throughout those eight weeks, participants will explore fundamental global health themes and gain a basic understanding of the field of global health," says Madeleine. "They will also have the chance to explore FIMRC project sites and understand how global health themes are applied through journal readings, case study applications, and a hands-on volunteer project." Those who participate in the Virtual Global Health Fellowship will also have access to clinical opportunities to observe primary care, pediatrics, psychology, and pharmacy interactions.
This year, FIMRC also launched our track systems in conjunction with the Virtual Global Health Fellowship. After completing Sessions I and II of the fellowship, participants will choose a specific track on a global health topic of their interest. "There are 12 different options for these tracks," Madeleine explains. "Topics include maternal and child health, infectious diseases, mosquito-borne illnesses, epidemics and pandemics, and much more to choose from." Once you have chosen your track, you will focus on that specific topic for an entire month while learning about the applications through specific FIMRC project sites.
VIRTUAL PROGRAMS ARE HERE TO STAY
FIMRC is happy to announce that each of these Virtual Volunteer Programs will continue to be offered indefinitely. "We have found that the Virtual Volunteer Programs have provided opportunities to individuals who may not have been able to travel, even without COVID restrictions," Madeleine says. "These programs offer the chance for individuals to gain a deeper understanding and connection with global health."
We could not be more excited to incorporate these virtual programs as an initial introduction into the project sites while also educating individuals on how FIMRC operates and strives to provide sustainable healthcare at a community level. "To see first-hand the understanding and the tangible pieces that virtual volunteers have been able to take away from the programs without ever having stepped on-site is amazing," says Madeleine. "To take that experience, and then have somebody travel and volunteer at a FIMRC project site is going to increase the impact that they have exponentially, not only on the community but the volunteer themself and what they're able to take away from that experience."
LOOKING TOWARD THE NEW YEAR
FIMRC is closely monitoring all travel restrictions and policies and will be updating our social media and website regularly regarding any new information. FIMRC will always put community safety first, and each project site will be taken under consideration individually depending on their situation, the country’s policies, etc. We hope to slowly and safely re-open project sites to volunteers throughout 2021 and look forward to a time when we can safely volunteer together again!
Eager to travel? Join our travel list for up-to-date information and be the first to know when you can travel with FIMRC again. Email [email protected] for more information.
Interested in volunteering abroad or participating in our virtual programs? Check them out below!
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