Voices from the global south : exploring the lived experiences of Ugandan health workers hosting British volunteers

Osman, H 2018, Voices from the global south : exploring the lived experiences of Ugandan health workers hosting British volunteers , PhD thesis, University of Salford.

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Abstract

Over the last few decades, volunteering in the global South by medical professionals from the global North has become a widespread phenomenon. Evidence suggests that this activity has been studied almost exclusively from volunteer or sending country perspectives. Comparatively, very little is known about volunteer hosts in the global South. Although emerging studies highlight the importance of global South voices in ‘development’ more generally, volunteer stakeholders report difficulty in building more sustainable relationships in global South settings. This study therefore sought to bring forth volunteer host perspectives, focusing on the lived experiences of Ugandan health workers hosting British volunteers employed primarily but not exclusively in the National Health Service (NHS).

The study utilised exploratory research design informed by the traditions of constructivist grounded theory. Ugandan voices were collected using observational research, focus group discussion, and interviews with 46 Ugandan health professionals (17 nurses, 15 midwives, 4 doctors, 4 biomedical engineers, 3 health facility leaders, 2 clinical officers, and 1 anaesthetist officer). Data analysis was conducted concurrently using thematic analysis.

The findings provided an in–depth understanding of Ugandan experiences and illuminated the existence of parallel and reciprocal relationships with invaluable contributions to the personal and professional development of Ugandan health workers and volunteers. Further, the findings highlighted three key themes relating to Ugandans’ perceptions of volunteers, their motivations of engaging with them, and contextual barriers to relationship building and learning. Collectively, these themes drew attention to the diverging priorities of Ugandan health workers, and the interplay between hierarchies (positionalities), volunteer engagement, and learning.

Contextual issues and host perspectives are important considerations in volunteer placements, and this study highlighted the importance of considering Ugandans’ perceptions and motivations for more collaborative, sustainable, and positive outcomes for all stakeholders.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Contributors: Ackers, HL (Supervisor) and Ahmed, A (Supervisor)
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society
Funders: Health Education England
Depositing User: Hassan Osman
Date Deposited: 18 Dec 2018 12:47
Last Modified: 18 Jan 2019 01:38
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/49506

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