Hospital Medical Support in Stone Town, Zanzibar

Join our medical program at the local referral hospital and expand your knowledge about healthcare services alongside local professionals. This program provides a valuable opportunity for medical professionals and prospective medical or nursing students to refine their medical skills and learn about healthcare provision in a different setting. If you have the required qualifications, you may also have the chance to provide medical assistance to individuals in the community who have limited access to healthcare resources.

WHY we need you in Zanzibar

Students sit on their desk 4 7 - Hospital Medical Support in Stone Town, Zanzibar

HOW can you help?

WHAT can you do?

Why Involvement Volunteers International?

Students during break time 2 1 8 800x600 - Hospital Medical Support in Stone Town, Zanzibar






  MIN AGE: 18+

  SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Medical background/ student


Established in 1923, the local Hospital is located in the heart of the historic Stone Town in Zanzibar, adjacent to the state house. It serves as the main referral hospital for both of the islands that make up Zanzibar, consisting of three different buildings, including the main one at Mnazi Mmoja, and others at Mwembeladu (maternity hospital) and Kidongo Chekundu (mental hospital). It offers various services, such as ENT, OB/GYN, ICU, paediatrics, eye care, general surgery, and more, making it a crucial resource for the communities it serves. As the teaching hospital for health colleges and universities on the island, it plays a vital role in training healthcare professionals.

Due to shortages of medical equipment and supplies, Tanzania faces numerous health problems, presenting a significant challenge to achieving the third goal of the United Nations 2033 Agenda for Sustainable Development – Good Health and Well Being. Therefore, participants in the Hospital’s medical program should have some medical experience or background to shadow and learn more about healthcare service delivery. Depending on your skill level and experience, you will be given various tasks to help out in the hospital, serving those with limited access to affordable quality health care.

Volunteers can contribute to the hospital by providing their knowledge and skills, as well as donating additional resources and supplies to help bridge the financial gap and support the local community. Duties may include observing and/or monitoring patients, treatment techniques, and providing health outreach information, among others.


Stone Town is an historic and cultural city located on the island of Zanzibar, off the coast of Tanzania. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is renowned for its beautiful architecture, narrow streets, bustling markets, and rich history. It has a unique blend of African, Arab, Indian, and European influences can be seen in its buildings, food, and culture. 

Project Tasks

  • Support the hospital staff with medical assistance
  • Add to your practical healthcare work experience
  • Observe the medical practices of local staff at the hospital in Zanzibar
  • Broaden your perspective of international medical care and treatment

Food & Accommodation

You will be accommodated in a traditional and comfortable guesthouse in Stone Town, with several bedrooms (2-8 per room, single gender), communal bathrooms, a kitchen, and a shared living room. Aircon, fans, bed linen, mosquito protection, and lockable rooms are all provided. No Wi-Fi, although local sim cards can easily be purchased nearby. You will can find a few small local stores that sell snacks, drinks and any basic supplies you might need during your stay. Nearby, there are ATM’s, banks, shops, a local pharmacy, etc.

All meals will be provided at the guesthouse during your stay (3 on weekdays and 2 on weekends). Local meals that are typical of Zanzibari culture will be provided at the accommodation.


- Medical Support

All prices in USD
  • 1 Week - $550
  • 2 Weeks - $950
  • 3 Weeks - $1375
  • 1 Month - $1795
  • 2 Months - $3550
  • 3 Months - $5295
Uni Campus
What's Included
  • Accommodation
  • Meals
  • Airport Pickup
  • Local Transportation
  • 1 Day Orientation
  • 24/7 In-Country Support
  • Project Materials & Equipment
  • Pre-departure Expert Advice
  • Preperation Tools & Checklists
  • Certificate of Completion


If you are a medical student, this is a fantastic opportunity to gain some knowledge of overseas healthcare systems, as well as some practical skills on the ground. For those already qualifed you are able to have a greater role in the hostpital and exchange knowledge between the local staff.  

  • Accommodation
  • 3 meals p/day & 2 p/day at weekends
  • Arrival airport transfer (Sat/Sun arrivals)
  • Filtered drinking water, coffee & tea
  • 1 day orientation
  • Daily transportation to project
  • In country 24/7 support & emergency assistance
  • Fundraising support
  • University course credits (where applicable)
  • Certificate of Completion
  • Airfares
  • Travel Insurance
  • Tours, Souvenirs & spending money

Included in the program fees is a half day orientation which starts on the Monday.

08-0833 – Breakfast

0900-1100 – Stone town City Orientation

1100hrs -1133hrs  – Spoken Orientation

12-13 – Lunch

1330hrs – Swahili basic lesson

14hrs 1433- Handling of documents such as code of conduct, house rules, child protection policies and Project meeting.

Programs begin every Monday, and volunteers are required to arrive the day prior, for orientation before the project. Your accommodation on the Sunday is included in the program fees. If arriving on Saturday, there is a fee for the extra night.

A free airport pickup is included when arriving to Abeid Amani Karume International Airport (ZNZ) on Saturday or Sunday between 6AM to 9PM.

If arriving outside of the pickup times, we charge an additional fee for any extra night’s accommodation before your program, and an extra fee for a private transfer.

Alternatively, if arriving early you could wait at the arrival’s terminal for the pickup time, book accommodation at the airport and meet us during the pickup times or make your own way to the project (we will advise on how to do this).

From the airport to the accommodation, it takes 15-33 minutes by car to Stone Town and around 1.5 hours to Nungwi.    

Monday to Friday

You will spend five hours or more each day assisting at the hospital with a lunch break in between. The day could look like:

  • Breakfast
  • Assisting with health care service provision at the local centre/hospital
  • Lunch
  • Assisting with health care service provision at the local centre/hospital
  • Dinner

This schedule can be changed and/or amended depending on weather conditions, local conditions and unforeseen circumstances.

Here are some of the best things to do in Zanzibar…

Stone Town

Stone Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its winding streets, historic buildings, and vibrant atmosphere. Visitors can explore the local markets, visit the old fort, and learn about Zanzibar’s fascinating history.

Relax on the beaches

Zanzibar has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, with white sand, crystal clear water, and palm trees swaying in the breeze. Some of the best beaches include Nungwi, Kendwa, and Paje.

Go on a spice tour

Zanzibar is known as the Spice Island, and visitors can take a tour of the local spice farms to learn about the different spices grown on the island, including cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves.

Snorkel or dive in the coral reefs

Zanzibar’s coral reefs are home to a stunning array of marine life, including colourful fish, sea turtles, and dolphins. Visitors can go snorkelling or diving to explore these underwater wonders.

Visit the Jozani Forest

The Jozani Forest is a nature reserve known for its unique wildlife, including the rare red colobus monkey. Visitors can take a guided tour of the forest to learn about the local flora and fauna.

Go on a dhow cruise

Dhows are traditional sailing boats used for fishing and transportation in Zanzibar. Visitors can take a sunset cruise on a dhow to enjoy the beautiful scenery and watch the sun dip below the horizon.

Visit the Prison Island

Prison Island is a small island just off the coast of Zanzibar known for its giant tortoises and beautiful beaches. Visitors can take a boat tour to the island to see the tortoises up close and relax on the beach.

Explore the local markets

Zanzibar’s local markets are a colourful and lively place to explore, with vendors selling everything from spices and textiles to handmade crafts and souvenirs. Some of the best markets to visit include Darajani Market in Stone Town and Forodhani Night Market.

Visit the Old Slave Market

Zanzibar was once a major hub of the East African slave trade, and the Old Slave Market in Stone Town is a sombre reminder of this dark history. Visitors can take a guided tour to learn about the slave trade and its impact on Zanzibar.

You must have an established medical background – studying on a pre-medical track, medicine, nursing, pharmacy, occupational/physical therapy, or working in a relevant field.

  • Recommendation letter from University for students
  • Letter of good conduct
  • Work Permit

Additional Equipment

Modest clothing -covering the knees and shoulders is required while working
Medical gloves, scrubs and masks for yourself

Zanzibar is an archipelago located off the coast of Tanzania in East Africa. It consists of two main islands, Unguja and Pemba, as well as several smaller islands. It has a rich history and culture, shaped by centuries of trade and interaction with Arab, Indian, and European traders and settlers. The islands are known for their beautiful beaches, vibrant markets, and historic Stone Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Zanzibar has a population of around 1.6 million people, with a diverse mix of ethnic and linguistic groups. Swahili is the official language, although English and Arabic are also widely spoken. Zanzibar has a predominantly Muslim population, with a rich tradition of Islamic scholarship and culture. The islands have also been home to a thriving arts and music scene, with influences from across Africa and the Middle East. Despite its rich cultural heritage and natural beauty, Zanzibar faces a number of challenges, including poverty, environmental degradation, and limited access to basic services such as healthcare and education. 

Zanzibar has a tropical climate with two distinct seasons: a wet season from March to May and a dry season from June to October. During the wet season, Zanzibar experiences heavy rainfall and high humidity, while the dry season is characterized by sunny and relatively cool weather. The average temperature in Zanzibar ranges from 25°C to 33°C throughout the year.

Zanzibar is located near the equator, which means that the islands receive strong sunlight year-round. The islands also experience occasional cyclones and tropical storms, particularly during the wet season. 

Zanzibar’s culture is a mix of African, Arab, and Indian influences, which is reflected in the local music, dance, architecture, and cuisine. The islands have a rich history of trade and commerce, with merchants from across the world visiting Zanzibar for its strategic location and abundant resources. As a result, Zanzibar has a diverse population of ethnic and linguistic groups, with Swahili as the official language. Islam is the predominant religion in Zanzibar, and the islands are home to many historic mosques and Islamic schools. 

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Check out this amazing blog with step by step info on how to raise funds for your overseas volunteer experience to help maximize your impact abroad. Guide to Fundraising

Weekends & Extra Tours

Ready to Volunteer in Zanzibar?