So who's teaching whom?BMJ 2000; 320 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.320.7230.323 (Published 29 January 2000) Cite this as: BMJ 2000;320:323
- Liz Smith, health network manager
VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas) sends skilled men and women to work in partnership with people in developing countries. The organisation has seen a dramatic surge in inquiries from health professionals interested in working overseas—figures released in February 1999 show that applications from the health sector have gone up by 55%.
In the wake of the Stephen Lawrence report the health service's capacity to deliver care to multicultural Britain is under scrutiny. Cultural awareness and sensitivity are at a premium, yet the skills of health workers who have worked overseas remain undervalued.
My colleagues still find it difficult to communicate how they have developed
A widely held assumption that volunteering is a one way learning process rather than an exchange of ideas, skills, and information means that a large proportion of my colleagues still find it difficult to communicate how they have developed professionally from their experience.
I spent two years in Zambia with VSO as a nurse tutor. My aims and motivation were misunderstood by many …