Volunteer Abroad in Nicaragua - An Opportunity for Students and Professionals to Give Back

Volunteer Abroad in Nicaragua offers the opportunity to experience another culture, to learn things not found in books or classrooms, and to gain a new perspective on the world at large.

Program Overview

Whether you’re looking for a change of pace (or scenery!) from your current medical/healthcare career or are looking for an exciting way to fulfill your internship responsibilities, The Roberto Clemente Clinic in Nicaragua presents an invaluable volunteer opportunity. It offers the chance to combine the adventure of travel with the benevolent act of giving back to those in need.

Volunteers primarily assist in the clinic, provide public health education and ongoing education for our medical staff, and help with daily administrative tasks.  Volunteering at the Roberto Clemente Clinic can even give you the unmatchable experience of working side-by-side with our doctors and nurses to help save lives or help create new healthcare programs for the clinic and possibly, the entire community.


If discovering a new country through surfing, camping, horseback riding and hiking sounds ideal to you, consider a volunteer vacation to Nicaragua!  Imagine a morning filled with the smiling faces of children eager to learn basic hygiene from you, followed by an afternoon of surfing or leisure at the beach.  Imagine providing vital medical care to an underserved community in the morning followed by a nature hike in the evening.

I Don't Have a Medical Background But Still Want to Be Part of Your Volunteer Program in Nicaragua!

Don’t worry! We can match your individual skill set to a local need. Social workers, students, teachers, and many other backgrounds have been very useful. Our international volunteers have included everybody from Peace Corps participants to high school, college and graduate students to retired professionals looking for a new challenge.

What Do Volunteers in Nicaragua Actually Do?

The activities described below are examples of the types of projects that volunteers are involved in during their trip. It is important to keep in mind that the type of activities you will be doing will depend on several factors including your ability to communicate in Spanish, your level of education and/or medical experience, how comfortable you are speaking in front of large groups of people, as well as interacting with patients on an individual level. Once our staff has identified all of the appropriate information, we can arrange your itinerary, which will include some or all of the following aspects:

1.    Clinical Practice

We are a small consultation and urgent care clinic that attends to approximately 12,000 patients a year. In addition to daily consultations, we offer several weekly services including pediatrics, dentistry, and laboratory services.

For those who are health professionals, medical students, and nursing students, much of your time will be spent in our clinic. Health professionals with three years or more of experience and can speak Spanish at an advanced level are able to interact one on one with our patients doing consultations, performing minor procedures, and prescribing appropriate treatments. For individuals who are studying to become doctors, nurses, physician assistants, etc. your tasks may consist of observing our medical staff, assisting with patient intake, giving injections and/or vaccinations, taking vital signs, and distributing medications. Students and those who are in their residency can expect to do a similar level of medical procedures that you would do in your country of residence.  Regardless of your level of experience and education our local medical staff will always be present so if you have any questions during your work at the clinic, do not hesitate to ask.

"Volunteering in Nicaragua, is for sure the best decision I made in my life"

 Ben del Bueno, CA

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We welcome people in the following areas:     

Audiologist, Biomedical Engineer, Chiropractor, Clinical Laboratory Technician, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Clinical Technologist, Dental Assistant, Dental Hygienist, Dentist, Dietitian, Electrocardiograph Technician, Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Epidemiologist, Health Educator, Healthcare Administrator, Hospital Administrator, Licensed Practical Nurse, Medical Assistant, Medical Laboratory Technician, Physician Assistant, Nurse Midwife, Nurse Practitioner, Occupational Therapist, Operating Room Technician, Ophthalmic Technician, Ophthalmologist, Optical Laboratory Technician, Optometrist, Osteopathic Physician, Pharmacist, Physical Therapist, Physician, Podiatrist, Psychiatrist, Psychologist, Radiographer, Registered Nurse, Respiratory Therapist, Social Worker, Sonographer, Ultrasound Technologist, X-Ray Technician,

Many professions in addition to healthcare are welcome!

2.    Community Outreach

Volunteer Abroad Nicaragua Aside from assisting in the clinic, volunteers are vital in the administration of various community outreach projects. This can include a range of different activities, however, the majority of the outreach we do is public health education. This can take place in several venues including schools, health centers, libraries, and in some cases, a community member’s house. Education topics include hygiene, nutrition, reproductive health, transmittable diseases, infections, and various chronic illnesses such as diabetes. Through educating our local communities we hope to prevent chronic diseases, instill healthy practices, and reduce growing health concerns such as teenage pregnancy.  In addition to teaching local people, our medical and non-medical volunteers are also instrumental in distributing the numerous donations we receive at the clinic. For example, this year we received a donation of water filters from a local NGO, which we were able to give to the three largest schools in the area. Other examples of donations include anti-parasite medication, reading glasses, toothbrushes and toothpaste, and clothing. If there is something that you would like to bring with you to donate to the clinic please let us know so that we can plan accordingly.  For those who are public health students this will be your main task during your time at the clinic. With the help of our staff, public health volunteers can work to identify a specific health issue facing the community and after thorough research can work to identify and implement an attainable solution.

3.    Continuing Education

We encourage those with specific training or skills to teach our local medical and ambulance staff. Topics have included intubation, emergency eye care, proper use of an EKG machine, and emergency first aid. All topics are welcome; however, please let our staff know what you are interested in doing prior to your arrival so we can plan accordingly with our team at the clinic. This component of the program is not necessary for everyone and is only meant for those with sufficient experience and knowledge in a particular subject matter. If you are unsure if you qualify do not hesitate to contact us and ask.

"Thank you for the opportunity to volunteer and help people living in such awful conditions. I truly enjoyed my time in Nicaragua, especially helping pregnant women that came for consultation. Dr. Flores and staff were wonderful."

Barbara  Jordan, Physician Assistant/OBGYN

Read More Testimonials

4.    Administrative Tasks

All volunteers regardless of their language ability or work experience will participate in this component of the volunteer program. Such tasks vary on a weekly basis depending on what needs to be done that day. Tasks include but are not limited to: doing inventory either in the pharmacy or the clinic, organizing donations, medications, or supplies, creating education materials, painting when necessary, and assisting our administrative staff in their daily tasks.

Program Donation Information

In order to participate in Roberto Clemente’s volunteer program, a program donation is due from each volunteer before arriving to Nicaragua. The minimum donation amounts are as follows:

Volunteer Medical Abroad

  • For students, non-medical professionals, and medical professionals with 3 years or less of work experience we require a donation of $400 which covers up to two weeks of volunteering.
  • For medical professionals with 3 or more years of work experience we require a donation of $200 which also covers up to two weeks of volunteering.
  • If you would like to volunteer for more than two weeks, the donation amount would increase by $100 for every additional week.
  • The program donation covers local transportation to and from the clinic as well as outreach activities. Your donation also helps to pay  the salaries of our local doctors and nurses who work day and night to provide quality healthcare to our clients.
  • While the needs of our clinic prohibit our ability to provide discounts to all who request them, we are able to make considerations for volunteers staying for 4 weeks or more. If you will be staying with us for a prolonged period of time, please let us know so we can give you the adjusted amount. 
  • In addition to the program donation, we also welcome donations of medical supplies. Please note that there are some restrictions as to the types of medications that can legally be brought into Nicaragua. Please contact us at 410-777-8626 – with any questions.
  • The following are the steps to planning a volunteer trip:
    • Familiarize yourself with the information on the volunteer page
    • Fill out the volunteer registration form  or contact us at clinic @ nicaclinic.org and we will send the link to you. You will receive an email from our staff once we have received your registration form to discuss your individual itinerary.
    • Make your travel arrangements and notify our staff with the final dates you will be volunteering.
    • Send in required documents and required donation
    • Set up your pick up from the airport with your hotel  and try to coordinate your trip so you can start working on a Monday if possible. Our volunteer coordinator is not available Saturday or Sunday unless you are coming with a group.
    • Get ready to enjoy the afternoons and sunsets in our Nicaraguan paradise!

Documentation Requirements

We prefer that you send in all documents 8 weeks prior to your arrival; however we can accept volunteers up to two weeks before.

Experienced Medical Professionals (3 or more years of work experience):
1. A notarized letter of intent (in Spanish) describing the type of volunteer work you would like to perform as a certified medical professional (We can provide the template for you to complete).
2.  Copies of your licenses, permits and credentials.
3.  Copies of your Diploma if you have been practicing for 3 years or longer.
4.  Copies of your passport with picture.
5.  Up-to-date Resume or CV.
6.  Program Donation
7.  Registration form
8.  Waiver signed and notarized (we will send it by email).
9.  International travel insurance in case of an accident.
10. A letter with full inventory of medicines pre-approved 8 weeks before arriving if you plan on bringing a large quantity of donated medicine.
11. Copy of electronic receipt which you will receive after you make the program donation.

Medical Bridages Volunteer
For Students, Non-Medical Professionals, and Recent Medical Professionals (less than 3 years work experience):
1.    A copy of your passport with picture
2.    Up-to-date Resume or CV.
3.    Program Donation
4.    Registration form 
5.    Waiver signed and notarized (we will send it by email).
6.    International travel insurance in case of an accident.
7.    Copies of your licenses, permits and credentials (medical professionals only).
8.    Copy of electronic receipt which you will receive after you make the program donation.

Enhance Your Life While Improving the Well-being of Our Community - Sign Up to Volunteer Abroad

Call us at 410-777-8626 to answer your questions. This is the most efficient way of communication to begin setting up your volunteer vacation!

 An Important Message From One of Our Volunteers



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