Pharmacy student helps provide care to new Syrian refugees

Danyah Musbah Portrait

According to the Government of Canada website, the nation has welcomed more than 29,970 Syrian refugees since November of 2015. Canada’s refugee resettlement efforts are still ongoing, and more asylum seekers are being welcomed every day.

Citizenship and Immigration Canada reports that approximately half of the incoming refugee population is younger than 24 years old. Almost all speak Arabic, and have a minimal understanding of English.

That’s where fourth year Pharmacy student, Danyah Musbah comes in. As an Arabic speaker and eager student, Danyah felt compelled to apply her professional knowledge in assisting the incoming Syrian population.

I knew that one of their biggest barriers to healthcare access is language. Although the majority are trying to learn English, medical language can be tricky, and often, newcomers can struggle with conversations surrounding healthcare topics.

Danyah set out to find a way in which she could be helpful, and this February all of the pieces fell into place. During her final year of clinical rotations, her preceptor put her in contact with the London InterCommunity Health Center (LIHC), which partnered with the Cross Cultural Learning Center (CCLC) to organize daily “walk-in” clinics where patients from the refugee population were able to get medical attention.

Danyah’s role in the clinic was to assist the nurse practitioners with interpretation during physical assessments, and to provide medication counseling to the refugees if and when a medication was prescribed. Danyah says that the experience was incredibly rewarding, and that she felt honoured to have had the opportunity to provide support.

Knowing all the difficulties that some refugees have been through – if I was able to make their experience slightly more pleasant with something as simple as translating, then it is my complete pleasure to have helped.

She adds:

I find that volunteering is ingrained in Canadian values, and it is always encouraged by my family, UWaterloo and the Kitchener-Waterloo community. What I love about our society is that people from all backgrounds are always willing to come together and help out, and I definitely saw many inspiring examples of that with various initiatives aimed at welcoming Syrian refugees.

Although her involvement with the LIHC has just come to an end, Danyah is already planning to seek out more opportunities where she is able to give back to the community, and she advises that others consider doing the same.

With every volunteer opportunity you will learn so much from the team around you, as well as give back and touch lives - whether directly or indirectly. So if you see an opportunity, do not hesitate to go for it, do not be afraid of failure and you will be pleasantly surprised with what you gain in return.


 

  1. 2018 (56)
    1. December (1)
    2. November (5)
    3. October (7)
    4. September (4)
    5. August (1)
    6. July (2)
    7. June (5)
    8. May (8)
    9. April (3)
    10. March (7)
    11. February (5)
    12. January (8)
  2. 2017 (62)
    1. December (3)
    2. November (7)
    3. October (7)
    4. September (4)
    5. July (4)
    6. June (7)
    7. May (7)
    8. April (3)
    9. March (8)
    10. February (7)
    11. January (5)
  3. 2016 (73)
    1. December (2)
    2. November (5)
    3. October (6)
    4. September (6)
    5. August (4)
    6. July (6)
    7. June (8)
    8. May (9)
    9. April (6)
    10. March (9)
    11. February (7)
    12. January (5)
  4. 2015 (65)
    1. December (5)
    2. November (6)
    3. October (3)
    4. September (4)
    5. August (4)
    6. July (4)
    7. June (5)
    8. May (6)
    9. April (5)
    10. March (9)
    11. February (7)
    12. January (7)
  5. 2014 (88)
    1. December (3)
    2. November (8)
    3. October (9)
    4. September (8)
    5. August (4)
    6. July (9)
    7. June (8)
    8. May (9)
    9. April (7)
    10. March (8)
    11. February (7)
    12. January (8)
  6. 2013 (38)
    1. December (4)
    2. November (8)
    3. October (10)
    4. September (8)
    5. August (8)