New grad in Nairobi looking for volunteer positions


hi everyone,

I'm a new graduate and newly registered/licensed associates RN from brooklyn NY. A few months ago, while i was finishing up my program and getting ready for a little test called the nclex (I wasn't distracted or preoccupied *at all*), my wife asked if i was interested in going to nairobi for 7 weeks, i said i was, and she said good, b/c she had received an internship working with a cave/rock art non-profit group.

In between worrying over Kaplan and other NCLEX ish, I figured when I got over there I would be able to find a clinic or hospital to volunteer at that could use the, ahem, expertise of a new grad.

And, now we are here.

The jet lag is beginning to wane a bit, and I am beginning to look for things to do that might relate to nursing.

I have written emails to a three different hospitals, and will follow up with phone calls in a few days. I am gonna call the missionaries of charity (mother theressas group) on the recommendation of a friend who did some work for them in the past (though i am not catholic, or particularly religious) and I am in contact with someone who helps run a girls school and is in the process of setting up a clinic in kibera. My CV and letters of recc are at the ready. I brought a tie.

My questions is does anyone have advice, or leads, on that may be able to help me find some sort of volunteer position?

& to make matters more complicated (and i want to tread lightly here as i have basically no knowledge of and very little experience with kenyan culture), I am a white american male, and while this isn't a problem back in the states in terms of nursing (at least not most of the time) i get the feeling isn't very common here to say the least..and i don't want to make anyone unduly uncomfortable.


Has 1 years experience.

I don't know if they are near you or if they take people for a short period of time but check out Mercy Ships - Mercy Ships

Specializes in ED, OR, SAF, Corrections. Has 26 years experience.

I have some experience with Mercy Ships and while they do utilize non-medical personnel, as far as nursing they are looking for experienced OR nurses who can scrub and circulate. Generally speaking NOT new grads or nurses without OR experience.

But never say never, give it a shot. Also they tend to do missions along western coast of Africa (Liberia, etc...) - Kenya's in the east. Enjoy Africa, it's an adventure you'll never forget!


56 Posts

PM me- I grew up there and know atlast two nurses working there.:)


1 Post

I worked in Kibera last August on a short term medical mission. It's not safe/advisable to travel within Kibera alone. We had Kenyan escorts and military police with us for the duration of our time there. That being said, It was the best experience of my life, if you can arrange safe transportation to and from Kibera it is a fascinating place with lots of healthcare needs. No one had any problems with me as a young white male nurse. Its not uncommon to see male nurses in Kenya, I worked along side a male Kenyan nurse who was excellent with very strong nursing skills. Feel free to PM with any questions

Specializes in hopefully ICU someday....

@ Ex2R0- i am not able to PM yet as i do not have the required number of posts. please contact me off boards at clnwht at gmail dot com. I'd really like to get your advice/opinions/contacts...(moderators: sorry for breaking the no personal info rule, there was no other way!)...look fwd to hearing from you!


Karen hospital has contacted me re:volunteering but they need the temporary license to avoid liability issues. So, I am meeting w/the nursing council of kenya on monday, hopefully to receive this temp license. Honestly i'd like to work in an environment that is different than a hospital, i've done that in school, but anything is better than nothing.