The Dentist Magazine.

Dentaid launches new volunteering trip to Zambia

Published: 09/08/2017

International dental charity Dentaid has launched a new volunteering opportunity for dental professionals in the beautiful country of Zambia.

The team will travel to Zambia from June 9-23, 2018. They will treat people in the town of Itezhi Tezhi and run outreach clinics in the surrounding villages, supporting the work of a Zambian dentist. Treatments will include fillings, scaling, extractions and polishing along with oral health promotion.

Itezhi Tezhi is on the edge of Kafue National Park, the largest protected area in Zambia which is home to an incredible array of wildlife, including lions, cheetah, elephants, zebra and antelope. In addition to providing essential dental care for local communities, the team will also have an opportunity to visit the park and stay in a safari lodge.

Dentists, dental nurses, hygienists and therapists are invited to apply to join the team of six who will spend a few days in Itezhi Tezhi Hospital before going to the surrounding villages to establish outreach clinics. Many of these communities are very remote and people would have to walk up to 120m to access dental services. Most people in the area work as subsistence farmers living in thatched mud huts, keeping cattle and goats and growing maize.

Other challenges faced by people in the area include wild animals stealing livestock, the quality and accessibility of education and healthcare and a lack of drinking water and employment. Many of the villages don’t have an electricity supply and our teams will be doing basic dentistry using portable equipment. Dentaid volunteers will also be asked to run oral health education programmes in schools and community buildings.

Volunteers are asked to fundraise £2,500 to cover the cost of their flights, accommodation, travel within Zambia, meals on work days and to support Dentaid’s ongoing work around the world. The first night will be spent in the capital Lusaka where a visit to an elephant nursery is planned before the five hour journey to Itezhi Tezhi.

“We are so excited to be launching this new volunteering opportunity in Zambia,” said Dentaid’s overseas volunteering manager Jaqueline James. “This is a great new partnership working with a local dentist in an area where many people find it very difficult to access dental care. We are sure that our team will do an amazing job providing dental treatment and they will also get a rare opportunity to visit this beautiful national park and see incredible wildlife.”

For more details and to apply to join Dentaid’s volunteering trip to Zambia from June 9-23, 2018, visit https://dentaid.org/missions/volunteer-zambia/  or call 01794 324249 to find out more.