At a glance
Join our Nutrition internship in Samoa and use your passion for healthy living to support disadvantaged communities. You'll learn directly from healthcare professionals and gain practical experience in the nutrition field.
In Samoa, around 80% of people over the age of 15 are categorised as obese. This means that there is an extremely high risk of non-communicable diseases like diabetes and high cholesterol. We need your help to improve health and wellness in these local communities.
Under the guidance of healthcare professionals, you’ll help with health checks. These are tasks like measuring blood pressure and blood sugar levels. You’ll also give presentations and raise awareness about healthy living.
You’ll live with a host family and work on the tropical island of Upolu. During your free time, you’ll have the chance to explore this beautiful setting, visiting sites like the majestic Falefa Valley.
Completely flexible datesSee Dates
Anyone aged 18 or over can join
You need to speak intermediate English.
Is a Nutrition internship in Samoa right for me?
If you’re interested in nutrition and healthy living, this internship is ideal for you. You’ll have the chance to use that passion to help people in need. At the same time, you’ll gain practical work experience raising awareness about nutrition and collecting medical data.
This internship is also a good fit if you’re studying nutrition or planning to study nutrition. You’ll have the chance to gain confidence working with patients before you graduate. You’ll also boost your CV, and gain insights that you can talk about during university and job interviews.
However, you don’t need any previous experience to apply. We’ll tailor the work you do according to your knowledge and expertise. What’s more, all your work is fully supervised with our local staff there to guide you through your activities.
Please note that you do need to be at least 18 years old to join this project.
The Nutrition internship in Samoa runs all year round and has flexible start dates, so you can join whenever it suits your schedule. The minimum duration is two weeks, but we recommend staying for longer to get the most out of your placement.
What will I do on the Nutrition internship in Samoa?
At our Nutrition placements in Samoa, you’ll gain practical experience learning from qualified professionals. You’ll also be working to meet the nutritional needs of local communities. Here are some tasks you can expect to do:
- Raise awareness about healthy living in schools and communities
- Help with home visits to check up on patients
- Research common health problems in Samoa and compile office resources
- Create eye-catching posters to put up in antenatal clinics
These are the main areas your work will focus on:
Raise awareness about healthy living
One of your most important tasks on this project is raising awareness about healthy living. There are a host of different ways you can do this. You can:
- Give presentations
- Run workshops
- Hold small focus groups
- Put up eye-catching posters
You’ll also get to work with people from many different walks of life. This could include working with new mothers or teaching classes in primary schools. You could also give presentations in communities or in homes for the elderly. Nutrition education benefits people of all ages and it’s never too late to live a healthier life.
We have all the support and resources you need to prepare for presentations and lessons in our local office. Through all your work, your supervisor will be there to guide and assist you.
Assist with home visits
For some patients, getting to clinics is particularly difficult. This can be for a number of reasons, for example if they struggle with their health and are unable to leave the house for long periods. To ensure that these people are getting the care they need, you’ll assist Samoa National Health Service (NHS) workers in conducting home visits.
Home visits consist of taking health measures of patients in their homes. You’ll help with checking a patient’s:
- Blood pressure
- Blood sugar
Based on this data, NHS professionals can give consultations on how to lead healthier lives. If necessary, they can also refer patients for further treatment.
Once you get back to the office, you’ll enter these measures into our Global Impact Database. We use this to track patient progress and monitor whether patients are improving.
Research health problems
As part of your office work, you’ll conduct research on some of the most common health issues faced by people in Samoa. This includes diseases like diabetes, hypertension and heart disease. You’ll use your research to create office resources, which future interns can refer to and learn from. In this way, you’ll help make sure interns are always learning from each other and developing new, creative ideas.
Create eye-catching posters
To help new mothers remember information about their baby’s nutritional needs, you’ll make colourful posters. You can include information like how to make sure both mother and child are receiving proper nutrition after the birthing process. Putting these up in antenatal clinics is an easily accessible way for new mothers to gain more knowledge about nutrition.
Project Partners on the Nutrition placement in Samoa
To ensure that we’re helping where it’s needed most and having the biggest possible impact, we’ve partnered with the Samoa National Health Service (NHS) and the Samoa National Kidney Foundation. These organisations support our work and help us reach as many communities as possible.
Where in Samoa will I be working?
Our Nutrition placement in Samoa is based in Upolu. This is an island surrounded by the clear, blue Pacific Ocean. The island is home to about 135,000 people. Samoa’s capital, Apia, lies along the north coast of the island.
You’ll be working in disadvantaged schools and communities. Facilities here are often basic, making your contribution even more important.
Formed by a dormant volcano, Upolu is lush with vegetation thriving off nutrient-dense ash. This makes it a haven for nature lovers, with many beautiful natural sights like Sopoaga Falls and the Piula Cave Pool. It’s also definitely worth taking some time to hike to the majestic Lalomanu Crater.
A typical day gaining nutrition work experience in Samoa
A typical work day will start at 8am and end at 3.30pm. You’ll work Monday to Friday, with your evenings and weekends free.
This is what a week on the Nutrition internship in Samoa usually looks like:
- Monday: Work at an antenatal clinic. You’ll also do admin work at the Projects Abroad office in Apia. This includes things like preparing for presentations and making posters.
- Tuesday: Run an awareness campaign at a local school, conduct family visits to check the health of families around the island, and enter data into our Global Impact Database.
- Wednesday: Teach people about sports nutrition or help National Health Service professionals with home visits.
- Thursday: Work at an antenatal clinic and then help with an outreach with the NHS. Alternatively, you could work in a home for the elderly.
- Friday: Visit a local primary school to run lessons and awareness campaigns. You’ll spend the afternoon entering data into the Global Impact Database.
You can spend your evenings and weekends exploring this beautiful island. You can also enjoy tasty meals with your host family, while learning more about their cultures and traditions.
What are the aims and impact of the Nutrition internship in Samoa?
The main aim of this project is to reduce the number of cases of non-communicable diseases in Samoa. We also aim to make this a valuable learning experience for you. This internship will give you the skills and confidence to pursue a career in nutrition or dietetics.
In Samoa, obesity is a serious problem. About 80% of the population over the age of 15 are obese. The islands have very little arable land, making it difficult to grow fresh produce. This means that many local people opt instead for processed food because they don’t have easy, affordable access to fruits and vegetables.
Diets high in sugar, salt, and fat cause high rates of obesity. This increases a person’s risk of issues like high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol.
What’s more, people in remote communities often don’t have the funds or transport to seek medical care when they develop these diseases. This makes prevention and awareness about non-communicable diseases particularly important for these communities.
To ensure we’re always working towards a long-term vision on this internship, we’ve developed a Nutrition Management Plan. The goals in this plan are:
- Reduce the incidence, prevalence, and complications associated with obesity and non-communicable diseases
- Improve maternal, infant, and young child nutritional status
- Improve nutritional status through improved basic hygiene and food safety knowledge
- Promote a healthy lifestyle and healthy environment for school children
Join our Nutrition internship in Samoa and help us work towards these goals.
Volunteering for Professionals
This project is also perfect for qualified professionals. With your skills backing up our ongoing efforts, we can make an even bigger difference together. We'll match you to the placement where your skills are needed most.
This means you can share your training and and knowledge with others. You can work hand-in-hand with our partner organisations and local communities to support sustainable development.
If you have relevant skills or qualifications, read more about how you can make use of them with Projects Abroad.
We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.
Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.
Measuring Our Impact
Our projects work towards clear long-term goals, with specific annual objectives. Every volunteer and intern we send to these projects helps us work towards these goals, no matter how long they spend on our projects.
Every year we take a step back and look at how much progress we've made towards these goals. We put together a Global Impact Report, which documents our achievements. Find out more about the impact our global community of volunteers, interns and staff make, and read the latest report.
Meet the team in Samoa
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