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Volunteering for Physical Therapists in Cambodia

Overview

This professional physical therapy volunteer project helps victims of war in Cambodia. Over 20 years of armed conflict has left a physical mark on many people of Cambodia.

Veterans International (VI) is an international humanitarian organization that addresses the causes, conduct and consequences of war through programs of advocacy and service to the victims of war.

VI's mission is to support Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) in Cambodia, who are victims of war and who are the poorest among the poor and marginalized in society. They aim to empower these people to build better lives for themselves and their families.

Your help as a volunteer physical therapist is really needed to help improve the quality of life of these war veterans.

How can volunteer physical therapists help in Cambodia?

What will I gain from this project?

What will Projects Abroad provide?

What skills or qualifications do I need?

How can volunteer Physical Therapists help in Cambodia?

Professional volunteer with patient on professional physical therapy project in Cambodia

As a volunteer physical therapist you will be working for Veterans International in Cambodia. You will be based in Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s bustling capital city.

VI firmly believes that having an artificial limb or brace and being mobile makes a difference between exclusion and participation in education, employment and community life. Their goal is that PWDs and their families can have a better quality of life that is more active and fulfilling and also become an equal member of the community, with equal rights, opportunities and responsibilities.

You will contribute to a busy team of qualified professionals and help with a variety of vital tasks. These can include

  • Take part in consultations, assessments, analysis, planning, and treatment of PWDs.
  • Join in patients rounds with other physical therapists and prothetists and othotists to discuss complicated cases.
  • Evaluate patient condition and adapt treatment and prescriptions accordingly.
  • Educate PWDs and their caregivers about client condition, prognosis and home exercise programs.
  • Support local physical therapists in self-learning and research activities.
  • Carry out paperwork for PWDs treatment concisely and clearly.
  • Help identify training needs of local physical therapists.
  • Assist with training, advising, and supporting local physical therapists in the management of patient care.

You will work from 18-35 hours a week - and sometimes out of hours - depending on the individual project and how you develop your role with your project supervisor.

This project runs all year.  Volunteers are required to undertake this project for a minimum of 2 months.  You will be placed at the National Baby and Children’s center (NBC) if you can only commit to 1 month.

What will I gain from this project?

Professional Occupational therapist volunteering in Cambodia

You will be involved with a friendly and highly dedicated team who are committed to the service they provide. Working with often limited resources and staff lacking technical knowledge and training, you will be able to adapt and develop your existing expertise to a different working environment. You will often face challenges not experienced in your home country. Through this cultural exchange you will learn different methodologies and techniques in your own discipline.

You will also have the opportunity to develop skills and experience in a wide variety of areas. These could be (and are project dependent)

  • Assessment of the needs of the project partner.
  • Collaborating with the project partner to develop more efficient and effective systems in the workplace.
  • Collaborate with the project partner to develop outreach programs in the local community and beyond.
  • Use your expertise to train staff and other volunteers.
  • Using your initiative and problem solving skills to develop, set up, and manage projects/programs.
  • Monitor existing or new projects/programs.
  • Develop and contribute to project evaluation reports to help with continuity between volunteers.

All of these can provide you with valuable experience and transferable skills useful for your career, and make valuable use of your existing expertise where it is truly needed.

What will Projects Abroad provide?

Physical therapist gives child a counting activity in a clinic in Cambodia

We have over 20 years’ experience of running volunteer projects. We provide you with the following support to make sure your time in Cambodia is successful and enjoyable:

  • Safe accommodation with a shared apartment close to your place of work.
  • Friendly and dedicated local staff available to help 24 hours a day.
  • A friendly member of staff available to meet you on arrival at the airport.
  • Medical and travel insurance.

What skills or qualifications do I need?

If you have at least a degree in Physical or a related subject then you will be suited for this project.

Ideally, a qualified physical therapist would also possess at least two years’ experience of practicing professionally.

Specific specialisms or interests in your field will be highly desirable. Please discuss this with us on application.

Please contact us if you think your knowledge may be useful on this project but do not have the required qualifications.

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