by Abigail Aaron
Child and Family Studies Major
During the Spring of my Junior Year I was fortunate enough to study in the amazingly beautiful yet unique country of South Africa, in the city of Durban located on the western coast of South Africa. The program that I was enrolled in was titled, Community Health and Social Policy, and so I took courses that discussed healthcare delivery in South Africa including the practice, prevention and promotion of healthcare, as well as the role that the media plays on influencing the wide range of health topics in South Africa.
My classes discussed topics such as social justice in rural communities, and healthcare practices that are specific to South Africa such as traditional healing. In addition to these classes, I took a beginning Zulu class where I learned to speak and read beginners Zulu so that I could converse with the locals as well as the four families that welcomed me into their homes during my homestays.
I had one homestay for five weeks in a township called Cato Manor located directly outside the city of Durban, and three rural homestays (2 days each) with families in the rural areas of South Africa in the countryside a few hours outside of Durban. During the last month of my program I completed a medical learnership in a rural hospital where I was able to shadow doctors and learn about the various health care issues specific to that community.