Public Health Internships in Cape Town

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If you’re considering a career in Public Health, VACorps offers an excellent selection of internships in South Africa. As a public health intern in our program, you will be working alongside qualified healthcare professionals in conducting epidemiological research, assessing access to care in South Africa, research, data collection, and education outreach programs in the community. South Africa faces many serious healthcare issues, including high rates of HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis – especially among women and young children in vulnerable communities. There is a high demand for healthcare in low-income areas of the city and many public hospitals and clinics lack appropriate funding and access to primary care. The overall experience will give you first-hand access to South Africa’s public healthcare system and will teach you a wide-range of skills that you’ll carry with you for a lifetime.

  • Tailored internship placement within the field of Public Health
  • 24/7 On-the-Ground Support from your team at VACorps
  • Weekly Cultural Excursions (sailing, surfing, hiking, Cape Point, township braai, and more!)
  • Program Housing (flexible leases for VACorps interns)
  • Weekly Culture Series (learn more about traditional Xhosa language and foods)

Questions & Answers


10 Rating
based on 4 reviews
  • 9-10 rating 100%
  • 7-8 rating 0%
  • 5-6 rating 0%
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  • Growth 10
  • Support 9.5
  • Fun 10
  • Housing 9.5
  • Safety 9.3
Showing 1 - 4 of 4
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Yes, I recommend this program

Cape town

I originally was not planning on coming to Cape Town but it was recommended to me during my interview and I decided to just take a chance and try it. I had never traveled to Africa before and was excited to explore a new place. When I was first paired with my internship I did not think that it was going to be a good fit. I was completely terrified to start work at my internship site, it was so far outside of anything that I was comfortable with and I definitely did not think that I would enjoy it. I ended up learning so much about myself and my field that I would've never expected. My time at my internship made me not only a better student but also a better person and it was completely unexpected. My internship transformed from something I was dreading to something it hurts to leave. I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Cape Town.

What would you improve about this program?
I would offer less instruction in the first few weeks, there is so much hand-holding by the program that people are not ever forced to sink or swim. This causes people to slip through the cracks that are not really ready/want to travel and expierance a new culture because they are never forced to be uncomfortable or figure things out on their own becu8ase someone helped them do every part of it
1 person found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Living the Cape Town Dream

Cape Town stood out to me when I read up on the public health internship opportunities available. After researching the history of South Africa and the beauty within the country, I couldn't help but put cape town down as my top pick in interning abroad. Living in Cape Town for three months has provided with me with life long friends, cultural knowledge, adventure, an impactful internship, and a desire to come back. My internship at Ottery Youth Care Centre has changed my perspective of life and will forever have a place in my heart. By implementing a garden project, creating a health curriculum, and getting to know the learners, I feel like I have fulfilled the best experience at my internship site. VAC has provided many opportunities with traveling abroad to keep the stay fun and eventful. I want to thank VAC for providing this internship and helping along the way!

What was your funniest moment?
When we went on an excursion to Cape Point and almost got attacked by monkeys. A group of us had to huddle together while the monkeys circled us (we made it out safe).
1 person found this review helpful.
Yes, I recommend this program

Capetonian at heart

My experience here in South Africa has empowered and inspired me in so many ways that it is completely impossible to narrate in a small passage. While working at Sarah Fox Children’s Convalescent Hospital I have been exposed to many circumstances that I would have never seen in the United States. The laid back atmosphere of Cape Town has greatly challenged my fast pace American way of completing tasks and has shown me that positive things can happen in due time. This internship has helped me gain confidence with my work as it has shown me that I am able to overcome things in the presence of adversity. It has also exposed me to ways of blissfully overcoming instances of low income and resources. The staff members at the hospital have been so welcoming and witnessing their passion even through the struggles of the facility will be something that I carry with me for the rest of my life. My time here has given me insight to a unique kind of love and happiness, where you should always show kindness towards every person you cross paths with and no matter what the uncontrollable situations of life may be you should never let anything disrupt your inner peace. The mother city of Cape Town has surely stolen my heart with it is culture, natural beauty, and adventure. I have met so many amazing people from all over the world that I will keep close to my heart through VAC, my internship placement, and the house that I lived in. I never thought that I could love living with 11 other people so much and 89 Station Road has shown me just that. I have been given me the opportunity to truly find myself through growing and learning in every moment of this adventure. It has been a sound reassurance as to why I have chosen to pursue a career in Public Health. This is not a “goodbye” Cape Town; it is a “see you later!”

1 person found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program


I spent 3 months working with Treatment Action Campaign in CPT and had the most incredible and life changing experience, all thanks to an amazing team who are with you every step of the way. VAC is so much fun and the guys so amazing at organising events and team bonding sessions to make sure everyone gets the most out of their internship, and out of their time spent in Cape Town! The experience i gained through the opportunity given to me by VAC to work with such an incredible and active NGO such as TAC was absolutely invaluable to me, and has secured a decision to now pursue something similar as my career choice in the future.

What would you improve about this program?
Perhaps more internships available, but everything else is awesome, especially the extra effort vAC go to to ensure all people are having a great and productive time! It is wonderful as well that they provide transport to and from townships to ensure safety.
1 person found this review helpful.