Nursing in Sri Lanka! ‍⚕️

1 in 4 of us will experience a mental health illness during our lifetime. It was also around 1 in 4 people that told me I was too young to train to be a Mental Health Nurse, but you are never too young to know that things need to change.

Now I’m loving my second year of Nursing and have the terrifying opportunity to develop myself professionally and personally, 5445 miles from home on a healthcare placement in Sri Lanka. Having received support myself in the past for anorexia, I considered all the tools I was given to build resilience and self-confidence… and booked on the placement that night!  

So now I’m going to Anuradhapura next year, having never travelled without my family before!

 Work the World is an organisation which provides rare chances for healthcare students to travel to small communities in third-world countries to volunteer within low-resource hospital and clinical settings.

Sri Lanka has one of the highest suicide rates in the world, yet their prisons are still used as a ‘safehouse for the mentally unstable’, such as vulnerable people with Psychosis, Depression, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Dementia etc. Many of these conditions are the consequences of civil war and natural disasters such as the tsunami in 2004, also aggravated by poverty.

Whilst in Sri Lanka I hope to learn about how their MH practitioners are tackling child Mental Health through education, psychotherapy and hypnotherapy sessions. I would like to be able to bring back alternatives to chemical-based treatments to help adolescents in the UK who are struggling with the pressures of modern day society.

The cost of sending a Student on a placement abroad is £2000 in order to cover the cost of staying in safe accommodation with other Students and the Work the World team representatives in Anuradhapura. I am also hoping to raise additional funds to donate to the hospital towards any resources or clinical equipment needed to provide the highest quality care.

My placement is in July 2018, and between now and there will be a variety of fundraising events so I would be extremely grateful for any support and ideas you can give!

Thank you for taking the time to read this!

Bethan x
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Bethan McElroy 
Rayleigh, East of England, United Kingdom
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