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ASHIA
A Student's Help In Africa.
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The Team

 

 
Sabine Fonderson is the founder and coordinator of ASHIA in The Netherlands. She was born in Cameroon and left the country with her parents at the age of 6 years. She finished primary school in Milton Keynes, United Kingdom. She moved to The Netherlands were she finished high school earning her an International Baccalaureate degree. She went on to study Medicine in the Leiden University Medical Centre. In 2005, Sabine decided to return to Cameroon to take part in a voluntary project in a rural hospital. This was a life changing experience for her. Not only did she get closer to her origins, but she understood the true values of voluntary work and its benefits to herself and the rural community. When she realized that there was a certain demand and lack of supply of voluntary help, she returned to the Netherlands and set up ASHIA.

ASHIA is a word used quite often in
Cameroon and has different meanings for example: If a child hurts his finger, a parent would say "ashia" This is a word to mean 'sorry', or 'I feel your pain', and more over it means 'I have compassion for you'.
With this idead in mind, Sabine set out to
create ASHIA so as to serve students who were looking for a placement in Africa, particularly in Cameroon. More importantly, it was going to reach out to students or volunteers and guide local Cameroonians in setting up structured, affordable and sustainable volunteer projects.

Since its origins in 2006, ASHIA has sent over 120 students to Cameroon. The majority of them are medical
students taking part in an internship in rural hospitals. Sabine keeps close contact with volunteers and with the staff in Cameroon to ensure a good passage of communication. Sabine is the first contact person for all students or volunteers going to Cameroon.


Her main tasks are to send volunteers information, make sure their
registration forms have been processed, inform the staff in Cameroon of their arrival and update the website. She also maintains close contact with local staff to ensure that the volunteers are satisfied during their stay. All this is done in her free time. During working hours, Sabine is a full time doctor in The Netherlands, currently working on her specialization.

Sabine hopes that one day the selection, allocation and implementation process of projects and volunteer internship can be done directly from the host country itself. According to her, "The efforts and commitment from both volunteers and local staff have been enormous. A student's help in Africa is about compassion, pride and dignity in what you do and in what you learn".

ASHIA team in Cameroon

ASHIA Cameroon is registered as a non-Governmental organization (NGO). This organization consists of 6 members. These members work every day in order to make sure that you get the most of your internship.
Below are pictures of the members, you will have the opportunity to meet each of them during your stay in Cameroon.
Every month the members have a meeting and discuss the internships, the experience of the volunteers, what has been improved and more importantly what more can be done to make this the chosen voluntary project for future volunteers.












 

 



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