Is HIV/AIDS work in Ghana right for me?
If you are looking to learn more about HIV/AIDS work in Ghana, while gaining practical medical experience, then our internship is ideal for you.
As you help treat and support people affected by HIV/AIDS, you’ll get a deeper insight into the healthcare challenges they face every day. You’ll also witness the discrimination they have to cope with.
This internship is a good starting point if you are pursuing a career in the medical or healthcare field, or if you are just considering the possibility. No experience is required to join. We’ll teach you everything you need to know, and you’ll work under supervision. You can also reach out to Projects Abroad staff at any time for help and guidance.
Please note that this work can become difficult emotionally, so you need to be prepared.
This internship runs all year round, so you can join on dates that fit your schedule. You can join for a little as one week. We encourage you to stay longer so you can see and do more.
Your work will focus on the following areas:
Sit in on counselling sessions as the medical staff consult with their patients
As an intern, you’ll get the chance to observe medical professionals at a local hospital. You’ll observe as they provide counselling to patients before and after they have had their HIV/AIDS test. Through this, you’ll learn how medical staff prepare patients for news that could be devastating. You’ll also help make sure that patients understand the treatment and options available to them if their test results are positive. You’ll also assist with counselling for HIV positive patients in the privacy of their own homes.
Gain experience working in various departments within the hospital
There are many different departments that you’ll have the chance to work in during your internship. You can observe and assist medical staff as they consult with HIV/AIDS patients receiving treatment in the antiretroviral therapy clinic. You could work in the diagnosis and testing unit where you’ll watch as staff test for the presence of HIV/AIDS in patients. You’ll also work with expectant mothers who have HIV/AIDS. They will be following a programme to prevent their baby from being infected.
All of your work here is supervised by medical professionals.
Run HIV/AIDS awareness campaigns at communities and schools
Prevention is critical. You’ll help run awareness campaigns in local communities and at various schools. There, you’ll educate the public and school children about HIV/AIDS. Most of the time, the community will not know what the disease is, or how it’s contracted.
There is often a stigma attached to this disease. Many people feel the need to keep their HIV/AIDS status a secret in order to avoid discrimination. You’ll provide communities with information about what HIV/AIDS is, educate them on how to prevent contraction, and try to eliminate any negative thoughts surrounding the disease.
What type of HIV/AIDS placements are available in Ghana?
As an intern, you’ll do HIV/AIDS awareness work in Ghana at a teaching hospital in the capital city of Accra. During your internship, you’ll work in the following departments:
- Counselling unit
- Antiretroviral therapy clinic
- Prevention of mother to child transmission unit
- Diagnosis and testing unit
- Nutrition clinic
Where will I be completing my project in Ghana?
As an intern in Ghana, you’ll work at a teaching hospital and in disadvantaged communities around the city of Accra.
As the capital city of Ghana, Accra is a constant flurry of activity from locals and tourists going about their day. The city is teeming with history. It is central to many of the historical and touristic sites detailing the many aspects of the West African slave trade. Along many of the streets, you’ll find some of the best Ghanaian cuisine, colourful garments, and exquisite handcrafts.
What is a typical day on the HIV/AIDS internship like?
A typical day will be from 7.30am to 2pm, Monday to Friday. However, you are free to stay later and cover an afternoon shift if your supervisor has approved it.
Every day will be a learning experience as you walk through the teaching hospital. You’ll learn about the HIV/AIDS pandemic in Ghana and the stigma surrounding this virus. Through our support programmes, you’ll work directly with patients affected by the disease. You’ll learn how to test for HIV/AIDS and provide support to those receiving treatment. If the patients allow it, you’ll also get to sit in on counselling sessions before and after HIV testing. This can also include antenatal counselling sessions.
Once or twice a week, you’ll assist the hospital staff during community outreaches. You’ll travel to schools, care centres, and disadvantaged communities. There, you’ll run HIV/AIDS awareness campaigns, and do basic health checks.
Once you are done for the day, you can head home to your host family.
Over the weekends, you can catch a “tro tro” bus or a grab a ride in a shared taxi to one of the many historical sites in the region. You can also go to a local restaurant or explore the nature and greenery in the mountainside of the nearby Akuapem Hills.
What are the aims and impact of the HIV/AIDS internship in Ghana?
The aim of this internship is to provide care and support to patients, and raise awareness about HIV/AIDS in Ghana.
In Ghana, HIV/AIDS is a major public health concern. The disease is a leading cause of death in many parts of Africa.
With an increase in the number of AIDS cases, Ghana is now working towards finding a long-term, sustainable solution. With the help of interns like you, we are supporting these efforts.
As part of our long-term plan in Ghana, we are working towards the following goals:
- Prevent new HIV infections
- Raise awareness about the disease
- Reduce the stigma surrounding HIV and AIDS
Help us work towards healthier communities and reduce the rate of HIV/AIDS infections in Ghana by joining our HIV/AIDS internship today.
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.
Leisure activities and free time
Volunteering in Ghana is an ideal way to explore this colourful West African country. There’s a huge variety of different activities to do while you’re there, giving you plenty of exciting ways to spend your free time.
Music is a central part of Ghanaian culture. In the bigger towns, especially Accra, you will hear some great live bands and have some memorable nights out. Evenings spent at buzzing restaurants will also give you a taste of some of the delicious local cuisine.
For a look into Ghana’s history, you can tour the slave forts of Cape Coast and visit museums. Nature lovers will relish trekking through the rainforests of Kakum National Park or Mole National Park.
We run a wide range of projects in Ghana so there’s sure to be other volunteers there during your trip. This means you can explore the country solo or connect with other volunteers and travel as a group.
Safety and staff support
Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have the support you need to enjoy your trip with peace of mind. Our Projects Abroad staff are available 24 hours a day to help, and will be on-hand to make sure you settle in well at your accommodation and placement. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.
Find out more about safety and backup.
Meet the team in Ghana
Not quite what you’re looking for?
Take a look at the following pages where you'll find collections of similar projects: