Medical Electives india sri lanka

Medical Electives Explore India & Sri Lanka

Quick Overview

Combine your travels with a medical elective in both India and Sri Lanka. Embark on your international training in two incredible locations and immerse yourself into two new cultures whilst getting invaluable hands on training to help advance your career. Your experience abroad will allow you to learn about healthcare and medicine in developing countries, in Kerala and Sri Lanka- famous for its systematic public health care system that is on par with developed world. There are almost 30% of people living under the poverty line in India, and poverty continues to be a big problem in Sri Lanka too. Cramped living conditions and run down slums create unhealthy living conditions where both physical and mental conditions can occur at any age. It is a great experience to be working in Sri Lankan and Keralan medical systems to see how extensive the outreach of healthcare is.

Our medical program is designed to not only give you experience working internationally, but to also alleviate the health problems in India and Sri Lanka’s poorest neighbourhoods. This program is suitable for both pre-med and medical students working in any field, including those training to be doctors, nurses, paediatricians, dentists, midwives, medical researchers, pharmacists and more.

What’s Involved

For your elective program in India, you will be based in Kerala, South India and you will work under the supervision of experienced medical professionals in busy hospitals and local clinics. During your time in Sri Lanka, you will be working and living in either Galle or Colombo and you will provide support to an expert team of medical specialists working in a local hospitals and clinics. There will be opportunity to work and learn from leading expert doctors. In Sri Lanka you will also learn about public healthcare outreach for preventative and curative care.

In both locations you will be working from Monday to Friday between 10:00 to 16:00PM. You could be shadowing doctors, making notes, helping with research and providing support to patients as much as possible. You will also get the opportunity to run a medical camp in the community. This could be conducting basic checkups for school children or in local village areas. Local teams will also be on hand along with local doctors to guide you.

During evenings and weekends, you will have the opportunity to explore the local areas of Kerala and the South coast of Sri Lanka, so you can get a fully immersive travel and training experience abroad.

All The Details

Kerala, South India

Colombo, Sri Lanka

2016 2017
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All our rates are in USD $

4 Weeks 6 Weeks 8 Weeks 12 Weeks
$1,949 $2,279 $2,559 $3,149

Price Includes

  1. Pre-departure guide  – to prepare you for your trip
  2. Pick-up and drop from the nearest airport
  3. Accommodation
  4. Experienced bilingual local staff team
  5. Breakfast and Lunch
  6. Location orientation
  7. Project training with the local Program Manager
  8. 24 hour support in your location for emergencies
  9. Hospital or clinic placement fee.
  10. Daily local transport to the project site

Whats Not Included in your program fee :

  1. Flights to the program destination
  2. Medical and travel insurance
  3. Visa costs
  4. Vaccinations
  5. Personal shopping and gratuities
  6. Local excursions

Local Team On Ground

Geetha Raj: Kerala Program Manager

Volunteering Journeys Kerala Team GeethaGeetha is the backbone of our programs in Kerala. Her friendliness, generosity and warmth towards every volunteer will leave you feeling extra special. Having worked as local journalist for almost 10 years, Geetha grew a passion for community development work, and is very forward thinking. She is instrumental in Kerala Program development and will give you the direction you will need to succeed as a volunteer. Her team will look after all your needs from the time you enter Kerala to the time you leave.

Melisa: Sri Lanka Program Manager


Melissa grew up in Argentina and started volunteering as a teenager for local organisations and events. Having started traveling the world at the age of 20 she didn’t stop volunteering and getting involved with the local communities and interesting projects. Melisa loves nature, wildlife, staying healthy, concious travel and immersing in new cultures. Sri Lanka is her latest passion and she will help you make the most of your time abroad (and take you to the best surf and beach spots!)

Getting to your Program and other bits..

  1. In India you will be picked up from Cochin International Airport (COK)
  2. In Sri Lanka you will be picked up from Colombo International Airport (CMB)
  3. If you need help to book flights fill in this form 
  4. Our Volunteer Guide will give you guidance on how to get your visas. Sri Lanka and India both have E-Visa Options.
  5. Travel Insurance is compulsory on this program. You can get in touch with our team if you need travel insurance organised.
  6. Vaccinations are important. We recommend you visit your local travel clinic to find out what vaccines you should take.
  7. We work with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office for travel abroad. Goto to find out how best to avoid trouble when abroad. Packed with essential travel advice and tips, the website also offers up-to-date country information.
  8. For support on any of the above email us

Weekly Plans:

In India: Once you get picked up from the airport you will be taken to our volunteers house in Fort Kochi where you will meet one of our local team. You will work in local hospitals in the area between 10:00 to 17:00PM Monday to Friday. In the evenings you are free and can enjoy yoga or cultural activities with other volunteers who you will be living with. 

In Sri Lanka: Once you get picked up from the airport you will be taken to your volunteer house or guesthouse (depending on your location). You will be met by our program leaders and given an area orientation. You will be working at the hospitals Monday to Friday from 10:00 to 16:00 PM on your medical placement. Evenings are free for you to relax or visit the local sights. 

Weekends :

In Kerala, you will be living close to the beautiful backwaters of Cochin, a must-visit destination and great to explore by houseboat on the weekends. For a scenic hike, head to the Munnar Tea Plantation or spend your time relaxing at the nearby beaches, Varkala Beach and Kovalam BeachIn Sri Lanka, you will be located along the country’s South coast, where you can take part in activities such as snorkelling and scuba diving or travel to major cities such as Colombo, Galle and Kandy.  

What Happens When I Arrive?


Living Arrangements for Medical Volunteers:

In both India and Sri Lanka, accommodation will be shared with other volunteers. All rooms will be comfortable and modern, and all homes will feature communal areas for socialising after hours. Rooms will be be ensuite with Western style bathrooms and toilet.

We usually make sure that you are near amenities. On arrival our local program team will take give you a basic orientation. Room upgrades (private rooms or rooms with air conditioning) will also be available upon request and daily meals will be provided for all of our medical elective volunteers. All project travel to and from the workplace will be pre-arranged for your convenience in both locations. Airport pick up and drops are included in this program.

Tangalla Beach Sri Lanka

Health and Safety :

When you join our programs you can be assured we have carried out Risk Assessments to identify potential safety and health risks on projects and in the community. We share this information with you in our pre departure documents.

Volunteering Journeys Foundation:

Through our commitment to responsible tourism we have developed the Volunteering Journey’s Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of people and communities around the world through supporting local charities, local organisations and community projects in the places that we work in. 100% of each donation goes directly to support our projects. Go to our Donation page if you want to support or fundraise for our India or Sri Lanka Program.


Why Volunteers Love Us!

  • ‘My experience in India was absolutely fantastic. Having never done anything like this before, Volunteering Journeys made sure I settled in well and supported me throughout my time. Being placed with an amazing family gave me the chance to experience Indian culture first hand.  I was part of the Disabled Childcare Programs for two weeks.  Although short, I felt the time I spent was so valuable for the children. If this is something that you are interested in I would 100% recommend it. The memories, friendships and experiences you will develop will be ones that you will never forget.’

    Fiona Kirk
    Connect with Fiona via our Facebook page
  • ‘The teaching experience was second to none. I was overwhelmed by the respect and politeness all the children have, which made it some much easier to work with them, even with the language barrier. The amazing thing about the schools I visited was that all the children are like little sponges, they absorb everything you say, teach and do! It’s quite outstanding how much they gain from just a small conversation in the playground or in the class room.
    So in general if you are questioning whether you want to volunteer and you don’t know what company to go with, it has the be Volunteering Journeys. You will be well looked after, gain an immense experience and make friends for life!!!’

    Jemima Kershberg
    Connect with Jamie via our Facebook Reviews Page
  • ‘I took a short sabbatical from work in November 2013 and decided to come to India. I was helping at a small school in Fort Kochi, teaching English, Maths, Science and the odd nursery rhyme. The school where I volunteered had amazing teachers and the kids were great. Ridhi and the team organised everything brilliantly – from cycling tours to the backwaters, to hosting me with a family that made my stay feel like home. If you’re going to volunteer in India then I highly recommend Volunteering Journeys’

    Glyn Owen
    Connect with Glyn via our Facebook Reviews Page
  • “J’ai passé deux mois formidables à Kochi en travaillant comme volontaire avec Volunteering Journeys. Deux mois de ma vie que je n’oublierais jamais. J’ai rencontré des gens incroyables et participé à des projets qui me tenaient vraiment à coeur. J’ai pu voir l’aboutissement de mes efforts et le sourire sur le visage des enfants. Une expérience magique que je recommande à tous. Merci Rainbow”

    Laura Prigogine
    Connect with Laura via our Facebook reviews page
  • ‘I spent 3 wonderful weeks with the Volunteering Journeys team in Kerala, it marked the beginning of almost 2 months adventuring through India, and I can say without a doubt it was one of my favourite experiences of my time spent in incredible India! From the moment my plane landed and I was greeted by a friendly face and whisked away to a wonderful home, the local staff were incredibly welcoming, helpful, supportive and great fun to be around!
    I spent my time volunteering in 2 local schools, assisting with English studies. The enthusiasm and joy with which the children approach their days will ensure you never want to leave!I cannot recommend Volunteering Journeys highly enough, it was such a joyful introduction to India – it’s culture, people and crazy beautiful way of life. You will leave with some fond memories and firm friendships’


    Katie Parsons
    Connect with Katie via our Facebook Reviews page
  • ‘I volunteered by teaching English both at a school and at an all girls’ orphanage for two months. It has been the best experience of my life so far. I really got to know the children I was teaching and seeing the children’s English improve over my time was an incredible feeling. From being introduced to yoga to tasting delicious flavoursome Indian cuisine and living in “God’s own country”, has left me eager to return. I have made friends across the World who made my time spent in Kerala unforgettable. I highly recommend volunteering with Volunteering Journeys; Kerala is beautiful and you will gain fun memories.’

    Elidith Cameron
    Connect with Eilidith via our Facebook Reviews Page
  • ‘I spent two weeks running an art workshop which was absolutely fantastic. The children were so enthusiastic and bustled about with paste and paint, putting together the most amazing creations. They were not used to producing collaborative work and were thrilled when their individual efforts achieved a glorious whole. Their personalities really shone through and I became very fond of them in the short time I was with them. Thank you to Volunteering Journeys for enabling me to have such a wonderful experience!’

    Jane Daniell
    Connect with Jane via our Facebook Reviews Page
  • ‘There is some kind of magic that happens when you’re in India. The climate, the people, the warm welcome, the happiness in every person, the culture, it’s simply inspiring. On top of that having a group of friendly, thoughtful organizers guiding me through the program made my time volunteering with Volunteering Journeys one of the most memorable moments in my life.
    If anyone reading this is considering becoming a volunteer, don’t hesitate, become a volunteer. It will be the most rewarding experience and adventure of your life. I assure you that you will have a vital impact on the community, the place and the children. I would recommend Volunteering Journeys without hesitation. Well organized and hassle free adventure. You get help and guidance with everything you need. Kerala was my destination. Safe, beautiful and very friendly. Just do it and have an adventure of your life!’

    Harminder Athwal
    Connect with Harminder via our Facebook Reviews Page
  • “Volunteering at the schools was one of the most incredible experiences of my life. Once again the friendships you create are irreplaceable. Admittedly, the first few days were scary, in the sense that my partner and I were only 18 & 20 yrs old and we were teaching women and children a language that was not their first. However the persistence and willingness of Indians is not to be tested. Each of our students put in 100% and naturally we became very personal with everyone and these women and children taught us much more. We came out of this experience with more than we had ever anticipated. It can’t be put into words just how much we learnt from volunteering. Ever aspect of our lives and mindset has changed.”

    Aimee Chirio
    Connect with Aimee via our Facebook Reviews Page
  • ‘I think it was quite an eye opening experience to kind of see how people live and enjoy their lives very differently to what we do probably in UK. Even though comparatively they didn’t have as much, the children still came to school with a smile on their face and they were really keen to learn. They were ever so happy and always had a smile on their face regardless of the circumstances that they are living in, and I think that was an amazing experience for us to take back. We have comparatively much more wealth in the UK and we have much more available at our fingertips. Yet we were quite not so happy’

    Andrew Davies
    Connect with Andrew via our Facebook Reviews Page
  • ‘We decided to volunteer as part of our family vacation. It was the perfect balance: making a contribution but not being asked to do too much, with Volunteering Journeys staff with us every step of the way to help, support, clarify, etc. I was also impressed that they didn’t feed us a line about how we were changing the world in a week; I knew going in that *we* would be the ones most changed, and the staff’s perspective’s was the same: we were making an impact by showing we cared and sharing experiences, which hopefully meant something to a lot of people.’

    Bob- Family-Volunteering-Review
    Bob Macauley & Family
    Connect with Bob via our Facebook Reviews Page

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