Mission: Serving in Mission (SIM).
Profile: Galmi is a 110-bed hospital located in a remote area at the edge of the Sahara Desert. The hospital has a very busy outpatient department, with 200-500 people seen daily. The hospital serves a large part of the population of Niger, as well as those that come from Chad, Algeria, Mali, Benin and Burkina Faso. Ninety percent of Niger’s citizens live in a narrow grain producing strip of savanna along the southern border. Local tribes around Galmi include the Hausa (most prominent), Fulani, Tuareg and Djerma.
Time Difference: +5 hours DST ahead of Eastern time, +6 hours ahead of US Eastern Standard Time
Travel: Volunteers fly by commercial airline into the city of Niamey, then travel about 5 hours by car, depending on road and weather conditions. There is a mission flight from Niamey to Galmi.
Location: The hospital is located 500 km east of Niamey in a remote Hausa area at the edge of the Sahara Desert. The village of Galmi is in the southern part of Niger and has a population of 8,000 to 10,000 people. Though situated on the main road that runs east and west across the country, Galmi is still a “bush” town. It consists of a dry landscape with rocks, sand and scrubby bushes for scenery.
Language: French, but Hausa is the language of most patients.
Climate: The cool season runs from December to February, with temperatures ranging from 55-95º F. The two hot seasons are from March to June and October to November, with temperatures ranging from 90 to 110º F. The rainy season is from June to September, with temperatures between 90-110º F. It is moderately humid in the rainy season and the average yearly rainfall is 21.9 inches.
Religion: About 90-95 percent of the patients are Muslim. Islamic beliefs are blended with traditional religious practices handed down from their forefathers.
Housing: Housing units range from a single one-bedroom apartment to houses with three to four bedrooms. These are simply furnished with a bed(s), stove, small refrigerator, minimal furniture, evaporative coolers and flush toilets. Blankets and quilts are available for the cold season.
Food: Volunteers are responsible for preparing their own meals. There is a food co-op open on Wednesdays located in the missionary compound. Fresh fruits and vegetables are available according to season (December to March is the peak season; few are available during the summer months). Many items are available in Niamey, but trips are rarely made due to the distance. There is a cafeteria on the compound that serves breakfast and lunch for a small fee.
Program Director: Dr. Joe Starke
Asst. Program Director: Dr. Yakoubou Sanoussi
Additional Faculty: Dr. Sean Dupont (General Surgery)
Began Training Residents: August, 2012