Belmont School of Nursing students and faculty were featured in a recent edition of the Freedom’s Promise newsletter for their work during this summer’s study abroad trip to Cambodia. The nursing program has long partnered with Sihanouk Hospital Center of HOPE in Cambodia but is now working more and more with Freedom’s Promise to help with their efforts.
Freedom’s Promise’s mission is to prevent human trafficking and child exploitation in Cambodia through individualized community development programs resulting in trafficking-free safe zones. Through one of their programs, Belmont students interacted with villagers on a daily basis and taught them life-saving hand washing techniques. They also increased the quality of community health by providing education sessions focused on nutrition and disease prevention.
Dr. Susan Taplin, assistant professor of nursing and 2014 DNP graduate, leads the program’s efforts in Cambodia and has traveled there with students for more than 10 years.
“If you don’t take care of the illness first, you’re not going to get anywhere else. Teaching them something as simple as hand washing can increase their life expectancy and quality of life. You and I have always known to wash our hands, and we don’t know what it’s like to not have that education,” Talpin says.