About

Click on the following to read more about:

Our Team

 Click on Each Member’s Name for a Full Profile:


Jieying (Anine) Yu

Program

Medicine (Year 1)

Reasons for Joining MedOutreach

I am excited to gain insight into the medical system in Tanzania, and to participate in many medical specialties. I am passionate about travelling and experiencing new cultures through many venues (people, food, landscapes, architecture, etc), so I am excited to explore Tanzania. I am looking forward to joining the health care teams in Tanzania, as well as the team at MedOutreach to provide care and raise funds for a very worthy cause.

About me

Outside of medicine and travelling, I am an avid cook and diner. I love learning, eating and cooking new cuisines. I am also an avid cyclist despite all my wipe outs.


Brady Eason

Program

Dentistry (Year 3)

Reasons for Joining MedOutreach

Last summer, I volunteered doing dentistry in Nicaragua for two weeks. It was an amazing opportunity that was not only full of valuable lessons, but also demonstrated what health care was like in less developed countries. The impact we made felt substantial and the people were incredibly appreciative of our services. This summer I am looking forward to the even larger endeavor, Med Outreach in Tanzania. I am eager to begin the fundraising and to be part of such a great program!

About me

I am an alumni of McGill and currently I am in my third year of dental school at Western University. My favorite past times include squash, golf, cosmology and talking at length about dentistry (joking…kind of).


Jenn Zhang

Program

Medicine (Year 1)

Reasons for Joining MedOutreach

I am excited to visit Tanzania, learn about a different health care system, build on my clinical skills, and meet new people!


Jordyn Toonen

Program

Western-Fanshawe Collaborative Nursing (Year 3)

Reasons for Joining MedOutreach

I joined MedOutreach because it is the chance of a lifetime. I will have other chances to work abroad but never in a learning environment such as this one. All that I experience during this year will be used in my future nursing career!

About me

I grew up on a pig farm outside London, If I could run and travel the world for a career that would be great, I ran my first full marathon this past October, I enjoy skiing with my family and dancing with my friends.
“A body in motion is always headed in the right direction” – Anonymous


Laura Smith

Program

Nursing (Year 3)

Reasons for Joining MedOutreach

Through my love of health care and my drive to help those in need of medical assistance, I hope to gain an international perspective of what health care means around the world. I believe that by joining MedOutreach, I will gain knowledge, experience, and memories that will aid in my future in the medical field. I cannot express in words how happy I am that I am on the MedOutreach team this year and I cannot wait to make memories that will last a lifetime!

About me

For as long as I can remember, I have loved playing the game of baseball. Another sport that I have participated in throughout my life is ringette. I love to read novels and my family is the single most important part of who I am.
In the future, I plan to work in healthcare. Also, I hope to be happy and healthy. One day, I would love to go skydiving.
“Great moments are born from great opportunities.” Herb Brooks
“Strength doesn’t come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t.” Rikki Rogers


Laura Vita

Program

Nursing (Year 3)

Reasons for Joining MedOutreach

I joined MedOutreach for the opportunity to travel and help others. I love learning about different cultures and from others experiences and I thought MedOutreach would be the perfect way to combine all of those things.

About me

My hobbies include anything outdoors – hiking, snowboarding, windsurfing and cycling are just a few! In the future I hope to become fluent in another language, climb Mount Everest and run a marathon. My favourite author is C.S. Lewis, and I have a soft spot for moose tracks ice cream.


Martin Reiss

Program

Dentistry (Year 3)

Reasons for Joining MedOutreach

Living in the bubble that is western civilization, with its ever inward focus, I often realize it’s easy to lose sight of the larger world around us. I am of course referring to the parts of the world that have more rudimentary concerns than their next smartphone purchase.
By doing outreach in Tanzania I hope to broaden my perspective with regard to Tanzanian culture, medicine, and dentistry. I can’t wait to meet and help new people, while continually gaining insight into what life is like outside of the western bubble we call home.

About me

My hobbies include skiing, sailing, and camping. In the future I hope to associate with a general dental practice somewhere outside of Toronto, and slowly work towards opening my own practice.
I also hope to continue participating in some form of outreach, whether it be internationally or nationally focused.
“A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in.” –Greek Proverb


Sam DeKoven

Program

Medicine (Year 1)

Reasons for Joining MedOutreach

I joined MedOutreach to have my first global health experience. I loved the idea of being part of a team that is in charge of the planning, fundraising, and implementation, but also works in the clinics with actual patients and healthcare staff. I hope to be involved in a trip that minimizes our cultural and resource footprint while maximizing our contribution!

About me

I am an avid camp counsellor and outdoors enthusiast, and I love to canoe, windsurf, and sail. In my spare time, I tend to play piano, write short stories, and do computer programming.
“Do or do not, there is no try” -Yoda


Sara Calvert

Program

Nursing (Year 3)

Reasons for Joining MedOutreach

I heard about MedOutreach in first year and instantly knew that I would want to be part of it someday. I feel that being able to gain an understanding of another healthcare system will allow me to deepen my appreciation for all of the resources that we have in Canada. I love to travel, and to be able to combine this passion with my desire to help others is an amazing opportunity.

About me

In my spare time I love to be outdoors. Some of my favourite activities include camping, hiking, kayaking and fishing! No matter where I am, I make sure I appreciate my surroundings and take advantage of any opportunities for adventure!


Our Impact

Medoutreach positively impacts many lives through their collaborative work with Tanzanian organizations by providing the delivery of health care and encouraging mutual learning, education, and exchange.

Our Partners and Projects in Tanzania Include:

  • Sunrise of Life Residential Centre

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Sunrise of Life is a local organization that works to support street children and orphans. On the street, these children face a bleak future amidst poverty and corruption. Sunrise of Life Residential Centre provides food, shelter, clothing, education and vocational learning to these children. MedOutreach works with this group to provide primary medical and dental screenings and treatment; and educational sessions pertaining to HIV/AIDS, and sexual health.

  • Upendo HIV Group

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Upendo HIV Group is a support group for HIV positive individuals located in Arusha, and is comprised of approximately 70 members. The Tanzanian government does have an existing program offering antri-retroviral therapy to HIV positive individuals; however, the treatment of many opportunistic infections affecting these patients is not government-funded. MedOutreach performs medical and dental screens for the members of Upendo HIV group at a local hospital, and provides medications free of cost. MedOutreach also provides educational sessions about HIV/AIDS, and works with members of the community to ensure that access to care and medication is available throughout the year.

  • Upendo Leprosy Home

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Upendo Leprosy Home is a local facility is designed to accommodate individuals suffering from leprosy, as well as their families.  The Upendo Leprosy Home has been sponsored and actively run by the Rotary Club of Arusha, which is linked to the Rotary Club in Brampton, Ontario. MedOutreach provides medical and dental screenings to those living in the home. Major components of MedOutreach’s role at the home are the provision of daily wound care and a range-of-motion exercise program.  Donations such as medications, medical supplies and knitted goods are also provided by our team. In addition, the nursing and medical students arrange home-based visits to patients who require advanced care.

  • The SDA Dental Clinic

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The SDA Dental Clinic allows the dental students from MedOutreach to conduct free community clinics in their space. This clinic is advertised to residents of Arusha in need of dental care. Extractions, fillings, cleanings, root canal therapy, and veneers are routine treatments provided by the MedOutreach team. We also cover the costs of diagnostic and post-treatment requirements (radiographs, medications etc) Equipment and unused sundries are donated at the end of our stay.

The Nkoaranga Lutheran Hospital

The Nkoaranga Lutheran Hospital is a government-run hospital in the rural village of Nkoaranga, location in Mount Meru region. The medical and nursing students on the MedOutreach team participate in morning rounds, bed making, medication delivery, wound care, baby deliveries, minor procedures such as mass removal, and major procedures such as c-sections, cyst removal and tubal ligation. The dental students on the MedOutreach team are responsible for dental extractions, restorative procedures, scaling and root planning, as well as diagnosis and treatment of abscesses and other dental infections.  In addition, the dental students run a community clinic for residents of nearby villages during the time spent at the Nkoaranga Lutheran Hospital.

  • The Engira and Bondeni KAMMED Clinics

The Engira and Bondeni KAMMED Clinics are located in Arusha, and are comprised of an in-patient clinic (Engira) and an out-patient clinic (Bondeni). The MedOutreach team teaches a few topics each year at Engira- last year the topics were HIV/AIDS in Canada, and how to perform a neurological assessment. The medical and nursing students conduct physical examinations on patients at this clinic. At the Bondeni Clinic, the MedOutreach team spends the vast majority of their time seeing cardiac patients and conduction physical examinations as well.

Our Education and Scholarship Projects include:

  • Arusha Primary and Secondary Schools

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MedOutreach teaches at several primary and secondary schools in Arusha, reaching over 680 young people.  Topics include: HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted infections, reproductive health, oral hygiene, nutrition, healthy living and diabetes, and substance abuse. This year MedOutreach hopes to provide teacher education as well.  MedOutreach also provides $6000 worth of scholarships for promising secondary students that would otherwise be unable to pay for post-secondary education.

  • The Mt. Meru Hospital

The Mt. Meru Hospital is a regional government hospital with a catchment population of approximately 1.3 million people.  The Tanzanian government helps cover the cost for individuals suffering from extreme poverty, young children under the age of five, deliveries, and certain illnesses such as AIDS and Tuberculosis. However, the majority of the population must pay for all health care.  MedOutreach provides donations of medical and dental supplies to this hospital, and also organizes observerships for medical and nursing students in the hospital.

  • UHAI

UHAI is a local community based organization in Arusha that provides HIV and AIDS education, testing, treatment, home-based care and various other financial and social support programs.  MedOutreach provides home visits and home-based care packages and pharmaceuticals to the UHAI dispensary.

Our History

The MedOutreach program was founded at UWO in 1986 by students from the faculty of Medicine and Nursing. Its mandate, determined by its past and present members, has been the promotion of primary healthcare principles in developing nations and the enrichment of medical, nursing, and dentistry students in the areas of Global Health and Public and Preventative Health.  Initially, MedOutreach collaborated for two years with the Haitian Ministry of Health and the Red Cross on a vaccination campaign in the St-Marc area.  Following their time in Haiti, the group was active in Nigeria in the summers of ’88 through ’93 and moved the project in 1994 to northern Tanzania, East Africa due to political reasons.

It was hoped that the students would not only learn the true value of the Canadian healthcare system, but to simultaneously aid local healthcare professionals in Tanzania in any reasonable way possible.  The students would also have the opportunity to learn from the cultural ingenuity of the local healthcare professionals in light of low or absent resources. It was thought that this type of experience enhances a healthcare student’s education and enables him or her to become a more compassionate and competent health professional at home in North America.

MedOutreach is currently able to send Medical, Dental, and Nursing students to Tanzania each summer on a completely student-run basis. All organization of the team, its fundraising, travel plans, and projects are completed by the team members themselves. Each year, selection of a new team by no means guarantees that an overseas mission will occur the following summer. However, ample forethought, hard work, and supportive sponsorship makes an excellent project possible.

MedOutreach is a charitable organization, built on the back of years past. It must be in the forefront of the minds of everyone involved that MedOutreach is not only comprised of the eight students who travel each summer; it is fueled by the generous donations of alumni, faculty, students, community members, and corporations who support its goals.

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