For doctors in training, there are many additional opportunities to gain experience, grow skills and expand knowledge – but making the time and finding the funds can be difficult.

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To assist, MIGA’s Doctors in Training (DIT) Grants Program provides four $5,000 Grants annually. This funding aims to help doctors grow personally and professionally, and ultimately facilitate the sharing of newly acquired knowledge with medical colleagues and patients alike.

Grant recipient Dr Thomas Volkman received funding from MIGA to undertake a courageous Neonatology Mission through Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) in Peshawar, Pakistan. An excerpt from his fascinating report provides an insight into his time in the country’s North, an area home to millions of displaced refugees from Afghanistan:

“I was under no illusions as to the cultural challenges of operating as a male doctor in a maternity hospital in Pakistan. Sporting a newly grown beard and dressed in the local Shalwar Khameez, many of the Pakistani staff say I look like a local Pashtun man; I feel anything but local but I appreciated the sentiment.

The main problems we face are the challenges of treating pre-term babies who are born underweight and underdeveloped. One baby was born with an opening in the abdominal wall leaving the abdominal organs exposed to the outside world. This baby fought hard and had a family with unending love, but the resources to provide this level of surgery do not exist for so many children of refugees or displaced people. Seeing babies succumb to readily treatable conditions is challenging for all of the team involved in their care.

This experience and these stories will stay with me through much of my professional and personal life. The expectations and trepidation stepping off the plane have been replaced with new skills, professional confidence and a sense of resilience…In this competitive age filled with the ‘fear of missing out’, it can be easy to stay on the path well-travelled. I say to everyone reading this report, if you have the voice inside you, just say yes.”

Be inspired by Dr Volkman and embrace an additional training opportunity – funding from MIGA could help you on your way! You can access Dr Volkman’s full report and more details about the Program using the links below.

Other resources

  1. Dr Thomas Volkman’s full report

    Learn more about his time in Pakistan

  2. Find out more & apply online

    Applications are now open!

  3. Library of past recipients’ reports

    Read about the incredible experiences of many other Grant winners

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