Spotlight on Global Brigades

Screen shot 2010-11-22 at 5.05.28 PM_mediumGlobal Brigades Spotlight

Global Brigades is the world’s largest student-led global health and sustainable development organization. The program has mobilized tens of thousands of university students and professionals since 2004 to work in under-resourced areas in the world. With a focus on respect for the local culture while incorporating innovation and improvement, they utilize skill-based programs to work in partnership with community members. The goal is to improve not just quality of life but also improve equality of life. The passion of the student-led brigades helps inspire a large social responsibility movement on the planet.

The mission of Global Brigades is “to empower volunteers and under-resourced communities to resolve global health and economic disparities and inspire all involved to collaboratively work towards an equal world. “ Brigades are currently working in Ghana, Honduras, Panama, and Nicaragua.

The programming developed and utilized by Global Brigades is based on the theory of Holistic Development, defined by the group as a system of collectively implementing health, economic, and education initiatives to strategically meet a community’s development goals.

Global Brigades has nine programs it implements with its volunteers along members of the community and other local experts. Those programs are:

  • Architecture
  • Business
  • Dental
  •  Environmental
  • Human Rights
  • Medical
  • Microfinance
  • Public Health
  •  Water

Each program has been developed in conjunction with community members and students and is designed to empower them. Students are encouraged to deliver high impact solutions while working with every shareholder. Each brigade requires between 10-20 volunteers. They are normally organized through chapters on universities or sometimes at companies who sponsor professional chapters.

Global Brigades is always looking for more people to get involved. The first step is to determine which of the nine programs can benefit from your skill set. Once you have found your program, select the “Join Brigade” button where you will find a search bar to find a chapter in your area. There may be a chapter near you already that you can explore joining.  If there is not one, and you want to start your own chapter, Global Brigades will assign you with an experienced Advisor who will guide you through the process.

You can also take a look at interning.  Global Brigade internships are among the most significant experiential learning programs in the world. You can obtain on-the-ground experiences to go with your already proven leadership skills. The combination will enable you to take a giant leap forward in your career path.  Internships range from three to eight weeks, and can be performed in Ghana, Nicaragua, Panama, Honduras, Rwanda and South Africa.

If you are looking for a way to learn a new culture, give back to the world, and improve the lives of others, Global Brigades offers stellar opportunities to make a difference and add to your resume. Try it, you will help improve the lives of others and it will transform yours!

Nathalie Baudet

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