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Barton Blog / Healthcare News and Trends

#BecauseICan: Volunteer Around the World

Posted on: October 16, 2019

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written by

Ellen Lowry

#BecauseICan is a Barton Associates campaign featuring the real lives of locum tenens providers and the reasons that they do locum tenens work. For all of the providers featured, the flexible nature of locum work allows them to live life on their own terms. Whether that means frequent travel, volunteer work, or extra time to pursue a passion, this campaign features great providers who live life on their terms because of all they CAN do with locums.

For these providers, the answer to the question “Why Locum Tenens?” is Because I Can!

Evy S.,  CFNP loves mission trips and volunteering internationally. She started locum tenens work in 2014, as a means of funding her own charitable work around the world. When we spoke with Evy, she explained how locum tenens has provided her with the financial flexibility to leave her full-time job and dedicate more time working in under-served countries.

“I left my full-time job to do missions trips and enjoy life more,” says Evy, who has volunteered in multiple foreign countries, including Fiji and Brazil.

“Once you’ve gone on an international mission, it’s not just rewarding, it becomes a passion. This type of work makes you want to volunteer even more. Yet, you understand, ‘Okay, how am I going to come up with that three thousand or four thousand dollars to go to the South Pacific?’”

“Without locums work, I couldn't do the missions. I financially couldn't do it,” she says.

It's no secret that locum tenens providers make more money per hour than their colleagues in permanent positions. This fact, combined with the flexibility of locum tenens, has allowed Evy to devote time to her passion for volunteering.

Specifically, Evy works through the Loloma Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to provide sustainable medical, dental, and infrastructure support to the rural communities of the South Pacific. Otherwise, these nations who would have no access to such care.

Evy has provided compassionate medical care in harsh and demanding conditions, and has been the driving force behind an effort to limit the effects of untreated, diseased animals on the public health of the natives on the islands. After a major cyclone destroyed the islands, She and a San Diego doctor raised funds to bring in Australian veterinarians.

Beyond the financial demands of these mission trips, Evy says that there is a large time commitment as well:

“It is very hard to do international missions and give the amount of time they want you to give, when you’re working full-time. You’ll have to take two weeks off, which is the most I’ve ever had in my life at any job. Missions work consists of 12-hour days and you get one day off, maybe, in that two-week period. So, it’s hard work. Some people can’t physically or financially do it.”

In the South Pacific, trips need to be planned for the spring, to avoid bad weather, and are scheduled five or six months ahead of time. Evy says that participating in these trips wouldn’t have been possible when she was working full-time for a major university in California.

“There was no flexibility, particularly once I was on the faculty staff. Even if my kids were sick, I was asked, ‘Can you bring your kids in? We have no one to cover you.’ I like the flexibility you have with locums work.”

And while some expect that locum work can be unreliable, Evy has found it to be the opposite. She has been able to work a few assignments that extend her contract or ask for her back, providing a consistency of income that makes Evy’s lifestyle and international volunteer work possible. 

“It's very helpful to have a reliable locums job. There have been some assignments where, when they need somebody, I know that they're going to call for me to come back. Locum tenens gives me some assurance that I'm going to have the funding for my next trip.”

We couldn’t be happier that it does! 

Ready to find your #WhyLocumTenens reason? Contact a Barton recruiter today!

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About Loloma Foundation: The Loloma Foundation’s mission is to provide sustainable medical, dental and infrastructure support to rural communities in the South Pacific who would otherwise have no access to basic healthcare. To learn more or donate to this important cause, visit http://www.lolomafoundation.org

About Animals Fiji:  Animals Fiji is a registered Fijian and US charity with a focus on animal welfare. The licensed, 501c3 charity is currently operating the only Veterinary clinics and welfare services in the Western and Northern Divisions of Fiji (a human population of over 600,000), where owners can seek treatment for their pets, livestock and wildlife. To learn more or donate, visit: https://www.animalsfiji.org/


Ellen Lowry
About Ellen Lowry

Ellen Lowry is content marketing specialist and former recruiter for psychiatrists and neurologists at Barton Associates' Peabody, MA, headquarters. Originally from the Boston area, she joined Barton in January of 2018 after earning her degree in communication from the University of Maryland, College Park, and completing a four-month internship at Walt Disney World.

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