Fiji Public Health & Nutrition- Review by Ben

"one of the most rewarding and exciting experiences of my life."

‘My time volunteering in Fiji with the IVI public health program was one of the most rewarding and exciting experiences of my life. It was a fulfilling experiences to help such beautiful people that are facing very serious but preventable health issues. The services, accommation etc. provided by IVI were far better than I could of ask for. The other volunteers were all wonderful, friendly people, with a shared desire to give their time to help others and work as a team.’

Highlights of the trip:

The biggest highlight for me was the connections and time spent with Fijian people in the village. The people were without reason so genuinely friendly and beautiful even though by ‘our standards’ they have little in terms of everyday living. It was a real privilege to stay in the remote villages and see how the people live, eat there food most of which was grown in the village and stay in there homes. Health checks was also a great experience and I really enjoyed the face to face time with the villages gathering information on the lifestyle and health. It was an extremely rewarding feeling at the end of the day after doing health checks, especially when we would find people with dangerous reading and send them away to hospital as simply as presences there may have saved that persons life. I really did love every minute of the trip to be honest.

Comments on the team, food and accommodation:

Jules our program manager was amazing I feel she was perfect for the role as she really knew how to keep things in order, get things done and had confidence to deal with serious and confronting situations in terms of some of the medical emergency BSL and BP reading that we got. The food was great as we got to have lots of traditional Fijian food which was just what I wanted. Accommodation was better than I would have asked for even when we stayed in the village homes on the floor this was exactly the experienced I wanted.

Any improvements to help us be better:

It is hard to think of any improvements as any inconveniences on the trip were more to do with the economic status of the country and availability of the everyday resources rather than anything IVI could have done better. Sometimes it was hard to get sufficient food I needed for the day but this is because I am vegetarian and in the remote places there was not always many options.

Thanks heaps, Ben 🙂

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