Five Denver College of Nursing (DCN) students and an assistant professor led community outreach and assisted in open clinics, dedicating over 100 hours to Denver area nonprofits serving homeless and senior populations and veterans undergoing treatment at the Veterans Administration (VA) Hospital in Aurora, said Marguerite Distel, RN, DCN assistant professor.
“Every quarter, DCN students engage in service-learning nationally and globally as part of their participation in the nursing college’s Global Health Perspectives (GHP) program. Twice a year, DCN students apply their skills to benefit Denver’s nonprofit community, facilitating food distribution, performing health assessments, providing meal service and distributing help wherever it’s needed,” said Distel, who also serves as DCN’s GHP academic coordinator.
At Colfax Community Network
, students worked in the nonprofit’s open clinic, providing healthcare outreach for children and families experiencing abuse, addiction, crime, harassment, hunger, loss of employment and neglect.
To provide meal service for Senior Support Services
’ low-income and homeless seniors, DCN students raised $2,000 among themselves, and cooked and served breakfast three times in one week for over 225 seniors.
For Denver Urban Ministries
, students accompanied client families through the intake process, connected those families to resources, and helped families through the food pantry so they could choose healthy and nutritionally balanced food options.
In a clinical partnership with the Veteran’s Administration Hospital, students assisted with procedures in the emergency department and in urgent care. Under the supervision of their clinical faculty, students attended to intravenous therapy and diabetes assessment
The five DCN students who participated included Caitlin Connett, Katie Lightner, Woobin Lim, Amanda Raskind and Ellis Whalen, and were mentored by DCN faculty member Toni Esperanza, assistant professor and a mental healthcare specialist.
DCN will conduct clinical internships with homeless and at-need populations of inner-city organizations every six months as part of the nursing college’s GHP program. The next effort will take place in June 2016.