Our Mission

The Dominican Republic Outreach Project is designed to provide students with hands on experience in international public health. Project activities are undertaken by students who participate in an elective graduate course, “Public Health Applications in Developing Countries.” Students in the course spend one week in the Dominican Republic working in Haitian bateys and other under served and marginalized communities.

The Project's mission is to:
  1. Provide students direct involvement with extremely poor communities whose health status is compromised or at high risk as a result of social, economic and political marginalization. Students gain knowledge of the health issues faced by these communities and public health practices designed to address them. One of the most challenging aspects of the project is to provide services and programs with minimal resources and within the context of a larger society that denies Haitians born in the Dominican Republic Dominican citizenship and many basic human rights.
  2. Provide direct public health service to individuals and families living in bateyes (former sugar cane worker camps) and impoverished barrios along the North West Coast of the Dominican Republic. Services include health prevention programs such as “de-worming,” food distribution, health education interventions and primary care.
  3. Provide educational, health and housing supports to a group of children known as “Blanco's Kids.” These infants and children were abandoned or orphaned and placed with other families by Blanco, a local community leader, who is devoted to their care and well-being. Our goal is to continue to work with Blanco to assure that these children remain enrolled in school, are adequately nourished and live in safe physical environments.