Please note this program is an unpaid global health education program. There is a program fee required to participate. This program fee pays for on-site services such a lodging, language classes (if relevent), 24/7 emergency support, coordination of rotations and/or placements, and on-site staff. CFHI is a nonprofit organization committed to fair-trade partnerships around the world. Please use the following code “HandshakeCFHI” in order to have the application fee waived when applying for a program on the CFHI website.
South Africa is known as the rainbow nation, a multi-cultural and multi-lingual melting pot. A nation where over 12 different languages are spoken and where South Africans of European, black, white, Indonesian, Indian and various mixed race descent interact. The diversity and openness one sees today sits in stark contrast with the oppressive history of a government system of racial oppression known as “Apartheid”. While official segregation no longer exists, race is still the most important factor affecting where people live, the type of job they have and the quality of government services they are able to access, such as quality education, infrastructure, sanitation and healthcare.
Travel to Cape Town, known as the “mother city”, and one of South Africa’s most beautiful cities. Cape town is the second most populous city in South Africa. Multicultural and diverse, this will be the stage for a first-hand experience of the daily challenges faced by its recently created healthcare system, where students will work alongside local healthcare personnel in public district hospitals providing care for the underserved.
Since the fall of Apartheid, South Africa has taken great strides to bridge the wide economic and social gap that was left with Apartheid. Infrastructure, education, healthcare services and economic opportunities have grown. The majority Black population had limited or non-existent healthcare until the 1990s and today South Africa’s healthcare system provides free or low cost care to most of its population. Yet, besides these great strides, South Africa was one of the hardest hit countries by one of the worst pandemics in recent history, overburdening a fledgling system that was just starting to provide basic services to the majority of the population who had little to no access to them. The legacy of Apartheid, poverty, continuing inequality and the lack of knowledge and misconceptions about HIV/AIDS, and other factors.
Adding to the cultural language immersion, live with local families in the Cape Flats area, a racially diverse great urban expanse behind Table Mountain, populated by forced government relocations during the Apartheid era. CFHI participants may also organize weekend trips from Cape Town to the world-famous Paarl and Stellenbosch wine country, or travel on the well-known Peninsula tour circuit to visit Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve, home to a colony of African penguins.