Tony prepares for his first volunteering experience

I had wanted to do some voluntary work for quite some time and when I saw the information regarding Equal Health in the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM) newsletter, Country Watch, the decision to volunteer was easy as everything came together at the right time - family, finance, experience.

The other main thing that attracted me was that it was India as I have always held a fascination for India. I have visited southern India a few times and have a very good friend who is Indian.

I also decided to go with Equal Health because it was a non-government funded organisation, non-religious and they needed someone with my skills.

This will be my first volunteer experience and I trust with my years of experience as a medical practitioner I will have something to offer. I have also done some rural locum work in rural New South Wales.

I expect the work will be somewhat arduous, more time wise with the volume of work and conditions, than mentally. There might be a few medical challenges, but I'm not too concerned - we'll work it out as we go.

I'm interested to see how it all functions. Working in a small community sounds excellent. It will be a first time discovery experience to see how it all goes and what I can contribute ...

I think the biggest challenge will be managing numbers - the work load. But, it is only a couple of weeks so we will survive!

What am I looking forward to? The food! Masala Dosi for breakfast! Also, the culture and the people.

On my return, it will be interesting to see what my experiences will be compared to my expectations.

Tony McDevitt, General Practitioner,Thirroul, New South Wales
India Camp 2014 volunteer