About India

While the official languages of the Indian government are Hindi and English, each state also designates its own official language, making a total of 22 official languages.

India is undergoing an epidemiological transition, as both non-communicable and chronic diseases are now the leading causes of death. There is no national health insurance, so private companies are the only option. Most families pay their healthcare expenses out of pocket, often leading to catastrophic health expenditures and medical payments that damage a family’s ability to maintain a basic standard of living.

Join ISL in serving alongside the “Sevak Project” and help make a difference for those in need of health care services.

Communities We Serve

Volunteers will be working with the Sevak Project in the state of Gujarat.  Sevak is a statewide intervention program to improve public awareness and knowledge of chronic disease prevention and management.  Using the U.S. Navy’s Independent Duty Corpsman (IDC) model for training and work (on a smaller scale), workers seek to improve sanitation and provide health education to rural communities. 

Sevak project workers, known as “Sevaks” are trained at Baroda Medical College, Vadodara, with an emphasis on lifestyle intervention and health screening for diabetes, hypertension, obesity, immunization, and chronic diseases. Sevaks also receive training in sanitation, environment, water purification, infectious diseases, and how to build toilets and smokeless stoves.

This project started in July 2010 and has screened over 10,000 people. It is one of the most successful non-governmental projects in India.

Logistics

Volunteers arrive in India via the Delhi Airport (DEL), then take a short flight from New Delhi to Vadodara/Baroda (BDQ). After going through Customs and picking up their luggage, volunteers are met by their Program Leader and transported to housing. Transportation and housing are both arranged and paid for by ISL through your program fees. The daily commute time from housing to work sites can be 20 minutes, or two hours when working in remote communities.

Volunteers book and pay for their own flights to and from Vadodara/Baroda (BDQ). Specific flight arrival and departure time frames will be provided to enrolled volunteers. Please do not book your flights until you are provided this information. 

Recreational Activities

Our volunteers have the opportunity to visit historical sites such as Mahatma Gandhi’s ashram, well-known temples and historic palaces; to go sightseeing, to shop at local markets, and to eat delicious Indian cuisine. To finish off the trip, you will get to visit the Taj Mahal!

Lodging

ISL has strict housing standards for cleanliness, safety and comfort. Each volunteer shares a room and shower facilities, but has their own bed. Housing locations are selected according to proximity to program sites. ISL staff members stay with volunteers and are available 24/7.

  • Internet is available at most housing locations. If internet is not available at their hotel, volunteers will be transported to an internet location periodically.
  • Laundry services are provided at least once a week for a small fee.
  • If food or drug stores aren’t within walking distance, Program Leaders make sure volunteers are transported to shopping areas as needed.
  • ISL provides breakfast each day, unless otherwise specified in the itinerary.

India's Staff

We love our staff and we are positive that you will too! Each staff member is professional, courteous, and has the same passion as you do: to serve others.

Monika Sawhney
Country Coordinator