Medical Project

The project is committed to improving the lives of the San community through education, health care and improved living conditions. The project is a great choice for volunteers with an interest in health care, community service, nutrition and medicine.

Namibia Medical Project
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Location Omaheke Region: Epukiro, eastern Namibia
Duration From 2 - 12 weeks
Dates All year round from mid-January to mid-December
  • You must have an upper intermediate level of English
  • Special skills: You should have an ability to take the initiative as well as a compassionate heart and interest in community work.
Minimum Age: 18
Your impact
Documents required Enrolment form, curriculum vitae, letter of motivation, passport copy, proof of medical insurance, (all travellers to Namibia are required to have a valid passport)
Day of arrival Saturday
Day of departure Saturday


  • Assist the doctors and the clinic nurse with the running of the clinic.
  • Assist the teachers at the local primary school and adult education centre.
  • Get involved in the agricultural project while helping to plant and harvest seasonal fruits and vegetables. This runs hand in hand with the nutritional support/feeding program providing a nutritious meal to around 120 community members twice a week.
  • Work closely with the San community and make a real difference to a marginalised community.
  • Visit the local state-run hospitals and clinics.
  • Go on rural outreaches and experience how remote and isolated these communities are and how essential the services are to them.
  • Experience the beauty of the African wilderness.
  • Take part in excursions in Namibia: 3-day to 28-day tours are available at an extra cost. Tours may include visits to the amazing sand dunes in Sossussvlei, the coastal resort of Swakkopmund and the Etosha National Park.
  • Make new friends from all over the world.
  • Exciting add-on projects available for combination.

Project Information

The clinic is dedicated to the health and welfare of the San Bushman community. The San are considered to be the oldest culture in the world and are traditionally hunter-gatherers. They have been forced from their original lands, which are increasingly being used for grazing cattle, leaving the San unable to carry on their traditional lifestyle. Bushman are treated as third-class citizens and live in extreme poverty.
The project is committed to improving the lives of the San community through education, healthcare and improved living conditions. The project aims to give the next generation of this poverty-stricken community the education, healthcare and help they need to survive and to build a brighter, healthier future.

The medical team, with the support of San translators, treat around 3,500 patients every year. Approximately 40% are children and babies and more than 90% are San. As well as examining and treating patients at the clinic and at our outreach sites, we transport and admit patients in urgent need of medical attention to the nearest hospital 120km away. A large focus of the work is to tackle the tuberculosis burden within the San population. The clinic is quite literally a lifeline for thousands of San Bushman.

Common diseases amongst child patients include fungal infections, intestinal worms, diarrhea, dehydration,
malnutrition and mouth infections. By themselves, these infections and illnesses may not be particularly severe.
However, if left untreated, they will get much worse, leading to complications and in severe cases, even death.

In addition to working at the Lifeline Clinic, the team also runs regular outreach clinics at local schools, resettlement villages and farms.

A recently added Agricultural Project has started at the Clinic, where the local San community is educated in growing their own vegetables to sell at local markets. It also involves the planting and harvesting of seasonal fruits and vegetables in a bid to make the Lifeline Clinic as self-sustainable as possible.

This also supplements the nutritional support/feeding program, a twice-weekly program that sees up to 120 community members receive a nutritionally rich meal. For so many, this is the only meal they can rely on. 

A chapel was opened on clinic grounds in October 2022. This space will also be utilised as a primary school and adult education centre. Volunteers can also be a part of the regular chapel services, mainly taking place on weekends. A primary school will be established in the chapel on clinic grounds in 2023. This will accommodate local children in Grades 0 to 4. Volunteers will be involved with assisting the teacher. 

Your Role

You work alongside the clinic’s doctor and nurse to learn about the common diseases affecting the local population and how to treat them. You work closely with patients from the local San community. Your training will be tailored to your skills, level, background and knowledge. Prospective medical students can expect to be trained in basic clinical skills, such as history-taking and patient examinations. Trained professionals are asked to conduct consultations with patients and to assist with outreach work. Trained professionals therefore have the opportunity to have a real impact on the people who are at most in need of help. 

Your tasks depend on your experience and background. Please note that medical professionals must be registered in Namibia to provide medical treatment.

Whatever your background/experience of, you will assist with the daily duties of the clinic, which may include: 

  • Recording patient observations: blood pressure, heart rate, oxygen saturations, temperature
  • Observations: pregnancy tests and urine tests for patients and recording findings.
  • Nutrition program: every second day, the elderly, mothers with babies and young children are fed
  • Weighing babies and keeping growth charts.
  • Recording blood pressure.
  • Glucose testing and recording.
  • Basic wound cleaning and dressing
  • Help in the pharmacy: stock control, packing medicine and new orders.
  • Family planning.
  • Project data input.
  • Sorting donated clothing and other items.
  • Playing with the local children who attend the clinic.
  • Preparing food packages for patients.
  • Recording patient information and survey responses on outreach trips.
  • General maintenance work in the clinic.
  • Agricultural Project: Cleaning of horticultural area, watering of seedings, pruning of plants, harvesting, packaging.
  • IT, DIY, gardening, painting or anything an isolated clinic can use are highly valued.

Volunteers often have special skills that are invaluable to the clinic and we encourage you to use them and suggest new activities that you feel the project will benefit from. 

It is important to note that this description serves as an example only. The daily tasks and challenges depend on the volunteer and the work that needs to be done. The final job description can therefore vary substantially from the above.

This project may be combined with one of our exciting add-on projects. add-on projects


You will stay in a volunteer house next door to the clinic. Depending on the number of volunteers, you may have your own room or may share with one other person of the same gender. Only a maximum of 8 volunteers can be accommodated at any given time so there is a house-share or family type environment. The house has a kitchen, bathroom and living room, electricity and hot water are freely available. Volunteers are expected to help with the cleaning and cooking. 

The doctors and nurses stay in a separate but adjoining building. However, they still share the communal areas with the volunteers, and are involved with the cooking and cleaning too.


Good Hope Volunteers Julia from Brazil

„I lived incredible moments here, I'm happy to go home but sad to leave everything here…the children, the clinic... I was able to learn a lot about life!!!“

Good Hope Volunteers Maria from Brazil

„It was the best opportunity that I could even imagine! The clinic is amazing, the job that the staff does is exhilarating. All the staff works with passion and responsibility. They deserve much more. Thanks for everything. I have changed a lot after that. Its different when you see the reality with your own eyes.“

Good Hope Volunteers Teresa from Portugal

„I believe everyone should volunteer and have this kind of experience at least once in their lifetime! As a doctor working at the clinic was certainly challenging but very rewarding while trying to improve their health conditions and lives.“

Good Hope Volunteers Julie from the Netherlands

“Be prepared to see poor people and to be in a more isolated area but don’t let it scare you since it is a very fulfilling feeling to help the people. I liked to do a project where people played a role after my time at the Wildlife Conservation Project. It is an informative and nice place to work and the local people are very happy with your help which is nice to see!”

Good Hope Volunteers Caroline from the UK

“My time at the Lifeline Clinic taught me an immeasurable amount about not only medicine, but also about African culture and myself. All the clinic staff were so lovely and took the time to teach me how to use my stethoscope, how to administer injections and so much more. By the time I left I had the confidence to take consultations and know which medications to prescribe. It was also very special to spend a month living in and travelling to rural Namibian villages and to work with San and Herero people; definitely an experience I will never forget!”

Good Hope Volunteers Inês from Portugal

„This project exceeded my expectations in a way it is impossible to explain. Being able to contribute to a better provision of care for these people made me feel very grateful and fulfilled. Without a doubt, what I liked the most was seeing how small gestures like smiling and hugging makes a difference in these people's lives. On a professional level, what I liked the most was to do my first baby delivery and feel all the emotions surrounding it.“

Good Hope Volunteers Natália from Brazil

“When I planned this trip, I could never imagine what experiences I would really live. I could never be ready for the things I saw and the reality I experienced. Volunteering is not so much about what you, as a volunteer, can do for those people, but what being able to help can do for you. This is the kind of thing that changes your life. It makes you rethink your role on this Planet. These people show you, through love and open hearts, what life is really about. I feel very grateful for allowing myself to volunteer and I think every young hearted person should do it too."

Good Hope Volunteers Laura from Brazil

"When I was a young girl I wrote a letter to Santa Claus: “When I get tired just remind me who I am and who I am supposed to be”. The whole experience was beautifully exhausting, but thanks for all the memories. I can strongly recommend it! Thank you for everything!"

Good Hope Volunteers Vera from Switzerland

"After my return back home everybody was obviously eager to hear about my volunteering at the Namibian Medical Project. So often I had to answer the question, or rather statement: ‚I bet you saw some intense cases.‘ Saying intense, they meant malnourished children as they are often presented in newspapers and television. The more I thought about it the more I had to set them straight since yes, I did see some ‚intense‘ cases but what struck me the most was the simplicity of the San’s lives. They spend their whole lives in the same villages, not knowing what tomorrow brings. People from westernized countries run from one appointment to another, therefore arriving in Epukiro felt like pressing pause on my life for a little while. Despite not having much, they never failed to smile and to be genuinely interested in my day. So, I had to adjust my answer: ‚Yes, I did see some intense cases. But knowing that now that I see them in the clinic means they finally get the help they deserve, took the sadness of the situation away. And it’s important to know that there’s so much more to the whole continent of Africa than malnourished children.‘ Thus I’d urge everybody who has the opportunity to go to Epukiro and see and learn for themselves. Thank you once again for making it possible for me."

Good Hope Volunteers Tatjana from Germany

"It was very interesting to be  so close to the people and see how they live. Of course we all know pictures from TV, but it is very different to stand in a village or house and see how poor those people are. It is very sad, that many families don’t have enough food and children get sick or even die because they are so malnourished. I have also learned how difficult it is to help and get enough food or clothing to the people or find a solution for the future how they can have a better life. The doctors, sisters and the translators are doing a great job. I was very impressed and I am very thankful that I could join them for this few weeks. I would like to do it again."

Good Hope Volunteers Carolina from Brazil

"Being part of the volunteers team in the medical project was one of the best experience I've had in my life. I can describe it as a life-changing opportunity, because you're able to get in tough with San's reality, which is one of the hardest and discriminated way of life I've ever  seen. The project showed me how a simple gesture of affection and attention is important for anyone, even in the moment of weakness and of a disease, and can help others go through difficult times. In the end, I could realized that the love I gave to them it was given me back as a lesson about the most valuable things in the world. So I would certainly recommend this programme to anyone interested in a medical volunteer."