Dental Outreach Team Leader
Volunteers Around the World (VAW) is always looking for new Team Leaders to form and prepare a team of student volunteers during the school year. The team will travel to the Dominican Republic or Peru during the winter, spring and/or summer and participate in the operation of mobile dental clinics in underserved communities.
The team leader will have a number of responsibilities throughout the year, such as: forming a team of student volunteers, establishing a board of student directors for the club, developing a relationship with a faculty mentor on campus, establishing VAW as an official club and/or class, attending regular phone meetings with the staff and other team leaders of VAW, and fundraising with their team. The board of student directors should be formed so that the club maintains its presence on campus even after the founding team leader has graduated. It is assumed that the team leader will travel with their team to one of the countries. VAW expects the team leader to dedicate 3-4 hours minimum per week to the club.
VAW – Dental Outreach provides volunteers with an opportunity to work first hand with experienced dentists in a developing country. Teams will accumulate medicine and supplies prior to traveling to the host country (via donations and fundraising). While in country, volunteers will intake patients, take vitals, shadow and assist the dentists, perform triage (extractions, fillings, cleanings, and sealants), distribute medications, and teach classes on hygiene, nutrition, and first aid, with an emphasis in oral hygiene (please note that each country has a unique experience to offer).
This is an intensive internship, valuable to future dentists, dental assistants, public health careers or anyone who interested in seeing what it is like to work the dental field. The internship is focused on giving volunteers a variety of experiences in treating patients, deepening their understanding of the medical field, and gaining experience and insight into working in a developing country.
The most important qualification is to be a self-starter. Though you will have constant access to the Volunteers Around the World staff for guidance, much of the work will require you to be self-motivated as you will have no direct supervision.
It is important that you feel comfortable in a leadership role and can direct people. A lot of preparation and organization is required for the trip, so it is imperative that you can delegate responsibility and motivate your team to stay on target.
Applicants must be very outgoing and social. You will need to feel comfortable talking to strangers and in front of large audiences; as you put together your team, you will need to be able to articulate your ideas and aspirations to other students you may not know.
Please note: it is not required that you speak a foreign language.