There has been remarkable progress in consolidating peace and rebuilding the country’s infrastructure since the end of Sierra Leone’s civil conflict in 2002. But there is still a lot to be done, especially with regards to healthcare.
The country is experiencing some of the highest maternal and child mortality rates in the world. Nearly 300 in every 1,000 children die before reaching the age of five, which is partly due to a server shortage of well trained health care staff. As a midwife at Tonkilili District Hospital you’ll provide clinical instruction and on-the-job training to student midwifes, helping the next generation of midwifes to rebuild Sierra Leone’s maternity services.
What does the role involve?
- Acting as lead midwife in developing and improving the quality obstetric care for women and managing midwifery services
- Training student midwives, and student nurses and midwifery technicians, and providing on the job continuing professional developmen for local colleagues
- Demonstrating, supervising and assessing midwifery procedures on the ward
- Providing advice and support for complex cases according to your expertise, such as post-op care, high-risk pregnancies such as twin or breech presentation, or family planning, care of under-fives, or mentally ill patients
Skills, qualifications and experience required
You’ll need to be a qualified and registered midwife with at least three years’ post-qualification experience. Experience of mentoring or training others (formally or informally) is essential. As with all VSO placements, you’ll need to be patient and flexible and have the ability to work creatively with limited resources. Above all, you’ll have the commitment to achieving the best possible care for the most disadvantaged Sierra Leonean women, teamed with the tenacity to cope with a challenging clinical environment with high mortality and morbidity rates.
And the rest...
Sierra Leone borders Liberia to the southeast, the Republic of Guinea to the north, and the Atlantic Ocean to the West. The country has some of the best beaches in the West Africa and you could visit Outamba-Kilimi National Park on a long weekend and spot diverse wildlife such as chimpanzees, colobus monkeys, buffalo, elephants and maybe even lions.
We’ll ask you to commit to 12-24 months to make a sustainable contribution to our development goals. In return, we’ll give you comprehensive financial, personal and professional support. We'll provide you with extensive training before your placement, and our financial package includes a local living allowance, return flights, accommodation, insurance and more. When you return to your home country, we'll help you to resettle and many of our returned volunteers stay involved with us long after their placement ends.