You send nursing students out to The Gambia, and then it’s a matter of ‘wait and see’. There’s always an element of trial and error. Students have to react outside their comfort zones: plane tickets, visas, accommodation, etc. There are many arrangements to be made before departure.
Once there, they learn to use their learning opportunities in a new culture.
They return home ‘richer’, with new professional insights: how do nurses work locally, how do people deal with health, illness and death, etc. On a personal level, they learn a great deal about themselves. Their view of reality becomes so much broader; there are other ways of living and they look at their own reality from a new perspective.
Travelling to The Gambia for this is really worthwhile.
With many thanks to the city of Ostend for making this possible.
Lecturer at Artevelde University of Applied Sciences.