Global Partners exists to improve the health and well-being of the global communities we serve by inspiring volunteerism throughout Gundersen Health System and local communities.
Global Partners was created in 2008 to develop long-term, sustainable relationships and community-to-community partnerships that expand beyond Gundersen Health System’s typical borders. In doing so, this global health model will improve the overall health of the region, education of the citizens and quality of life for people in our partner communities located in South Dakota, Nicaragua and Ethiopia.
These partnerships are not one-sided. We learn from the communities we serve. By observing the resiliency of populations who have limited assets and resources and unique cultural approaches to solving problems, it will help us improve our own efficiencies and models of care and education. In addition, these volunteer opportunities help us gain an appreciation for the access we have to healthcare and education in our own communities.
Global Partners is a program of the Gundersen Medical Foundation, funded by philanthropy and fueled by community volunteers. Gundersen is not working on this project alone. We have developed partnerships with community groups - including school districts, universities, service clubs, businesses and other organizations - in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa, as well as the areas Global Partners serves.
Our volunteers travel to three locations:
While many things vary from region to region, one thing remains the same. Each site desires a sustained connection that will improve the long-term, overall health and education of their community, not just take care of their day-to-day needs. Global Partners facilitates the development of:
- Medical services and training, including primary, specialty and surgical care.
- Education support, including the education of community-based healthcare workers, scholarships for high school and post-secondary students, student exchanges and classroom partnerships.
- Public health initiatives, such as maternal-child health programs, community health assessments, water filtration and housing projects.
- Resources, such as supplies, textbooks, medical equipment, healthcare manuals and more.
Every project developed through Global Partners needs to demonstrate the program's core values of Sustainability, Relationships, Volunteerism and Stewardship.