Friday, July 24, 2015

South Africa Rendezvous

Hi guys!! So I know it's been a while since I was able to post. I've been so busy taking two summer classes as I prepare for graduation in December! I want to share with you all about my trip to Cape Town this past June! So I was able to travel to Cape Town June 16-27th for my Community Health nursing course. I spent 12 days in Cape Town along with 7 other students and together we worked along side Extreme Response and their partners Living Hope and New Beginnings. I was able to serve the local communities while there in the Western Cape.

I had such a great time performing health screenings in the local community, which consisted of blood pressure checks, blood sugar checks, height, weight, and BMI assessments, as well as TB screenings and HIV testing. This trip provided me with an opportunity to explore the roles of the community health nurses that work in South Africa. As a nursing student I became aware of my perceptions in my goal of becoming more culturally competent. I believe this trip provided me with the relevant aspects of cultural knowledge. As I engaged first hand with a new cultural group I learned how our own attitudes could influence our perceptions about cultural differences.
During my time in Cape Town I was able to really get a chance to explore the area and do some "touristy" things as well. We all went to Fairview Farms, which is a vineyard, and we had wine and cheese tasting. We also spent two nights on Buffelsfontein which is a game reserve! On the game reserve I was impacted by just the presence of the wild animals. Seeing them up close was amazing and standing so close to a cheetah was unbelievable!

Among other things, we all went to Table Mountain, toured the hospital where the 1st heart transplant in history happened, the Nursing School at the University of The Western Cape and the southern most point of South Africa, called the Cape Of Good Hope!

The hightlight of my trip was the incredible time I had loving on the kids of a local daycare we wentto visit! During my time in Cape Town I learned so much information about nursing, healthcare, and history. I am very thankful for the opportunity to have traveled to South Africa. This trip will always be one of the most memorable trips I’ve been on. Getting to know various individuals in South Africa was such a blessing. I enjoyed sharing pictures of my family with them, as well as taking pictures with them. My trip to Cape Town was undoubtedly a life-changing experience. I know that I have grown as a person and this experience will help me be more of an empathetic and culturally competent nurse.


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