Uprise Travel is excited to announce its first ever medical mission trip, which will run from August 7 to 16, 2019. In addition to visiting some of Ghana’s most beautiful places, volunteers will have the opportunity to expand their horizons by living, eating, and working with locals. Uprise Travel has partnered with Chances Foundation, a community-based nonprofit that operates a health clinic in the Adaklu District of Ghana’s Volta Region. Jean-Paul Sewavi, who is an education abroad coordinator at Michigan State University, will coordinate pre-departure orientations and facilitate the experiential learning on site. Jean-Paul has more than 15 years of experience in education abroad and international volunteering program management. A Togo native, Jean-Paul has extensive experience living and working in Ghana.
The purpose of this first volunteer tour is to assess community needs in collaboration with Ghanaian volunteers in order to lay the groundwork for future medical mission tours. Both local and foreign volunteers will be trained in Photovoice, a participatory research method which uses photographs as a means to start dialogue amongst participants about community health issues.
Sewavi is optimistic about the future of this partnership. “This is an excellent opportunity to contribute to the development of a strong and sustainable volunteer project based on the needs of the communities. Between Uprise, myself, and Chances Foundation, we will take a community engagement approach and ensure every volunteer group is able to make a positive and lasting impact.”
Uprise co-founder Musah Alhassan is excited about this first medical mission trip as the company increases its focus on how to travel to developing countries in a responsible and not self-serving way. “No matter who you are we have a way for you to help and contribute to the development efforts in your host community. Volunteer tourism is such a complicated and tricky area to work in, and there are so many volunteers who end up doing more harm than good to the community where they volunteer. We are so happy to have the support of a service learning expert like Jean-Paul to guide us on this first foray into medical mission tourism,” Musah said.
While the main focus of the tour will be the volunteer component, this 10-day tour will not be without its share of tourism and fun. Before settling into the Volta Region, the group will visit the UNESCO World Heritage Cape Coast Castle. The tour also includes a full day exploring the highlights of Ghana’s Volta Region, including the Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary, Amedzofe, and Wli Falls.