Nursing Placements in Tanzania | Global Medical Projects

Nursing Placements in Tanzania

The nursing projects in Tanzania are based in regional and district hospitals in Arusha in the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro! The hospitals act as referral centers to other health facilities in Arusha and Manyara regions so the cases you will see will be varied.

Nursing care in Tanzania is unique and you will be working alongside teams of very dedicated and professional nurses. In most regional hospitals in Tanzania, nursing staff are trained in HIV testing and counselling. Nearly all patients admitted in these regional hospitals are tested for HIV which means that this skill set is something that every nurse in Tanzania must have.

Nurses in Tanzania also face a unique set of challenges when delivering care. Firstly, Tanzania, like many poorer countries, struggles to retain doctors so the nurse to doctor patient ratio is very different to home. Secondly, very poor resources mean different approaches are taken. For example the prescribing of drugs is a major problem for Doctors when dealing with the very poor. A patient prescribed a course of antibiotics can, in many cases, only afford to purchase a small number of pills and the chances of them completing a full course are very slim. Despite the lack of resources the medical staff are able perform and provide extensive services.

Traditional medicine is also practiced in some of the hospitals and there is active research into areas where it has been found to be effective. Local healers are still regularly consulted in Tanzania and some of their methods are known to have very good effects. It has been known that when medicines are in short supply for patients to be advised by doctors to find specific local plants and trees to make teas and follow the traditional healing methods.

Areas of nursing available:

Paediatric nursing
Adult nursing
Mental health nursing


Cost in £

2 weeks3 weeks4 weeks5 weeks6 weeks

Cost in Euros

2 weeks3 weeks4 weeks5 weeks6 weeks

Cost in US $

2 weeks3 weeks4 weeks5 weeks6 weeks

Cost in Auz $

2 weeks3 weeks4 weeks5 weeks6 weeks

Cost in £

Extra weeksExtra monthsLanguage courseOrphanage project
£200£795£100 (per week)£200

Cost in Euros

Extra weeksExtra monthsLanguage courseOrphanage project
240€900€135€ (per week)240€

Cost in US $

Extra weeksExtra monthsLanguage courseOrphanage project
$240$995$160 (per week)$240

Cost in Auz $

Extra weeksExtra monthsLanguage courseOrphanage project

Other Destination Information

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Most of our volunteers stay together in the house of our co-ordinator Joshua Kuboja in Usa River, just a short commute from Arusha. Joshua has a large building attached to his house which accommodates up to 8 people (when double beds are used), or up to 16 people during the busy summer period when bunk beds are used.

The accommodation is in the peaceful Arusha suburb of Usa River. This means that the accommodation is far enough away from the hustle and bustle of Arusha to be relaxing but also close enough and a short 20-30 minute commute for most of our placements.

The accommodation is unique in that it means that the majority of volunteers can stay together in group accommodation, but also retains a family feel.

In the evenings you can sit and relax with your fellow volunteers and gaze at the imposing Mt Meru which you can see from the veranda and on a clear day you can also so the mighty Mt Kilimanjaro.

Occasionally, you might stay with local families if your placement is difficult to get to from Usa River. Hostel and hotel accommodation is also available if you prefer at an additional cost.

The accommodation provided is very comfortable and spacious. The living room and bedrooms are equipped with fans. There is always electricity and plenty of water even though it may not always be running. Your meals will be provided at the accommodation.

Whether you are on a journalism placement, teaching or working in hospitals, all the placement participants stay together in the same area which means that you are never far away from someone to socialise with in the evenings or travel with at weekends. The standard of the accommodation will basic and not be what you are used to at home so please don’t expect all mod cons, but it will be clean and tidy.

Our manager in Tanzania, will be on hand during office hours if you have any general queries and only a phone call away outside office hours if there’s something much more urgent.

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Our projects in Tanzania are based in and around Arusha in Northern Tanzania. See the google map above
Highlights – Tanzania

The cost of the programme in Tanzania includes language lessons. Language is an integral part of Tanzanian culture so learning a bit about music in Tanzania will give you more of an insight into the Tanzanian way of life.

Weekends are free and, depending on how many volunteers are overseas with you, you are based in the same accommodation which means that you can easily go travelling at weekends. Our location in Tanzania means that you are close to some of the Tanzania’s most popular attractions.

Climbing Kili is very popular and recommended for a long weekend break but it can be expensive. We recommend that you acclimatise for a week or two before attempting the climb to save yourself from any potential altitude sickness. Permits and guides mean that a climb can cost over £400 so budget accordingly.

Further afield, you can visit the spectacular coastline, which is without doubt one of the most beautiful in the world. Travel across to the mystical spice Island of Zanzibar is also recommended.

No visit to Tanzania would be complete without a trip to one of the spectacular National Parks. If you’re with us in the summer you may just catch the Wildebeast migration!

The most pleasant time of year to travel to Arusha is during the cool dry months June through to October. At this time of year, temperatures will peak at around 20-25 degrees, dropping to around 10 degrees at night.

Tanzania will experiences two wet seasons (March to May and November to January). The rains are unlikely to be a deluge, most of the time they are a short sharp period of intense rainfall.

You will have weekends free to travel and visit the sights so do take some spending money for food, accommodation and souvenirs.

Exactly how much to take is a matter of great debate but most who have travelled to Tanzania recommend that you could probably get by allowing £50-75 per weekend spending money. If you can, take a little extra just in case to allow for emergencies or those ‘must have’ souvenirs.

You cannot get Tanzanian currency outside of Tanzania so it’s best to take your spending money as travellers cheques or cash. Credit and debit cards are not widely accepted in Tanzania. You can usually draw money out of ATM machines on credit and debit cards from most banks in Tanzania but this should not be relied upon. Visa cards are the most widely accepted although cards with a cirrus symbol can also be used.

Travellers cheques are the safest way to carry your spending money to Tanzania as they can be easily replaced if lost or stolen. In our experience we’ve found that American Express travellers cheques offer the best service but most travellers cheques are accepted. It’s probably best to avoid ‘Thomas Cook’ travellers cheques as some banks do not accept them.

However, do take a debit or credit card (preferably a Visa card) and some cash with you as travellers cheques are difficult to change (often requiring hours of queuing in banks).

You can take cash as sterling, Euros or US dollars. All are easy to change in Tanzania.

Please arrange flights into Kilimanjaro Airport (JRO). There are a reasonable number of airlines to choose from. From UK regional airports, KLM is also convenient, flying from various UK cities via Amsterdam, again every day. We advise you to shop around, however, as competition is strong and deals change on a daily basis.

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Country Directors – Joshua Kuboja, Elias Majogoro and Laban Irhene

GVP Tanzania is a locally registered NGO and that enables us to support a number of projects and initiatives. The organisation in Tanzania is run by our colleagues Laban Irhene, Elias Majogoro and Joshua Kuboja.

We initially started the project when we met Laban Irhene who at the time was completing his Phd thesis in the UK. He had heard about the work that our parent body Global Volunteer Projects did and contacted us to chat about how we could work together to meet our shared objectives.

Laban is incredibly well connected through his work with Arusha University, where he teaches, and also through his contacts with various NGOs in Arusha. This enables us to offer such a wide variety of projects in Tanzania. Working closely with Joshua and Elias, Laban oversees all our projects in Tanzania.

Joshua lives in Arusha with his wife Beatrice (seen in the picture above with their daughter Lena) and is the Director of Maua English Medium School, our main teaching placement in Arusha. Joshua also conducts our Swhaili language course. His links with the schools and orphanages in the area are extensive.

Elias also shares most of the day to day running of GVP Tanzania. Elias also teaches at the University of Arusha, where he was previously Head of HR, but has left that role to concentrate on his commitments to GVP Tanzania.

As a registered NGO in Tanzania, our aim is to give young people in Tanzania successful futures through helping and preparing them for education and work.

Our Vision

To promote sustainable solutions for a rapidly changing world; our focal-linkage is in the fields of environmental research, conservation, education and community development.

Our Mission

To reach out to a young generation and to provide facilities in the interest of Social Welfare and other charitable purposes of benefit to Tanzania and to provide support, training and advice which enhances the effectiveness of the organization involving volunteers to promote charitable activities on behalf of the communities of Tanzania.

What Do We Do?

We work alongside and with skilled local partners and our teams in Tanzania to identify and build long term projects that tackle local problems.

How Do We Work?

We build skilled local teams in Tanzania that identify key issues affecting poor communities and seek to find solutions to these problems by sourcing ongoing financial support and creating volunteering opportunities.

[/accordion-item][/accordion] Photos from our projects in Tanzania (on Facebook, opens in new tab)

Our Costs Include:

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Accommodation on your project will be with either local families or in group accommodation. You exact accommodation depends on the number of volunteers and your project.

All accommodation is checked by our overseas staff and host families vetted. If you don’t feel comfortable in your accommodation, do please let us know as soon as possible and our overseas staff will do their best to make you more comfortable.

However, please keep in mind that you will be living in lesser economically developed countries so please don’t expect the same standards as home. Access to running water, electricity and other things that we take for granted WILL be limited but we’ll do our best to make sure you have the best that’s possible.

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Our UK team is on hand to answer any questions that may pop up before you go. Please don’t hesitate to call or email to chat about anything that may be concerning you. You should especially not worry about asking any questions you may consider that we’ll think is stupid. The chances are that we probably asked exactly the same questions before we headed off on our travels!

You will receive pre-departure information that will tell you more about your accommodation and placement. This will arrive about 4 weeks before you depart. We can’t send you this immediately as exactly where you stay depends on the numbers that join us. However, by 4 weeks before you depart we will have a good idea of how many people are joining us and we’ll finalise the details of your accommodation.

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Arriving in a new country for the first time can be quite daunting so our overseas team will be there to meet you with a big sign and even bigger welcome!

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We think that it’s important to give you a thorough introduction to your new home for the next few months therefore, our overseas team will give you an induction and orientation covering everything you need to know from basic customs to where to change money.

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Our overseas team are not just there to meet you at the airport. They’re also not there to molly cuddle you either. Our overseas team is on hand during office hours to do anything they can to help you get the most out of your experience. You will also be given out of office contact details to be used in the event of emergencies, so please rest assured that in the unlikely event that anything goes wrong, our overseas team will be there to help in whatever way they can.

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We have worked carefully to develop links with medical staff at hospitals and clinics in all our partner countries. It takes time for our overseas teams to develop and maintain these links so that we can continue to offer you the best medical experience possible.

We think it’s fair that the hospital should receive something in return for supporting you and Global Medical Projects so part of the project cost includes a donation to your host hospital.

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During your time with us we will make sure that your food is provided. Please note that sometimes this will be provided by your host family and sometimes by your host organisation. Where this is the case it is extremely likely that this food will be local food. Most of the time this will not quite be what we’re used to and can take some time to get used to. Rest assured it will be hygienically prepared and nutritious but it will be difficult for them to prepare foods which you are used to at home.

We’re sure that for most of you, eating the local food is part of the experience. If you don’t like the food, we urge you to try to persevere. Ultimately, if you are just not enjoying the experience we will do our best to make alternative arrangements. Please keep in mind however, that the availability of western foods maybe extremely limited and/or expensive so it may not always be possible to change things that much!

Most people elect to go travelling at weekends, so food isn’t always available at this time, particularly in those locations where we have our own accommodation as we often give the cooks the weekend off.


Not Included:

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We’re not a travel company, and as such we do not arrange flights. However, we can help you to make the necessary arrangements and suggest people to speak to.

Additionally, many people join us as part of a world trip so it’s often easier for you to arrange your travel as part of a round the world ticket.

Don’t hesitate to contact us if you would like help arranging your flights.

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As many people join us as part of a world trip, we do not include insurance as part of the projects. However, we are happy to introduce good companies that can provide you with excellent and affordable cover.

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You will need additional spending money for travel to work, weekend excursions and gifts. Exactly how much to take is a matter of great debate but contact us and we’ll be happy to give you a rough guideline on how much you will need.

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Many of the destinations require you to purchase a visa. We can arrange the visas for you but this will be an additional cost of up to £100.

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Most of our countries will require you to be inoculated against diseases that have been eradicated at home. We can advise on which inoculations you will need but will encourage you to visit your doctor or a local travel clinic where they will discuss the best vaccinations for you.

Some of these vaccinations will incur costs so budget accordingly.

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We’re happy to provide food when you are on a projects with us or staying in our accommodation but when travelling you will need to buy your own food. In most countries good local food is incredibly cheap. Western food is a luxury and is priced accordingly!


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