Project Description

Occupational Therapy Internships Abroad in Cape Town, South africa

By participating in occupational therapy internships abroad in Cape Town, you will work alongside established occupational therapists and gain professional experience that is otherwise difficult to receive elsewhere in the world.

Types of Occupational Therapy Internships:

Students with a strong theoretical understanding of human anatomy/physiology, developmental psychology and/or prior experience working in rehabilitative settings should consider an occupational therapy internship abroad with VACorps.

VACorps has established occupational therapy internship opportunities with hospitals/rehabilitative settings, geriatric centers, at mainstream or special-needs schools, and certain NGO/NPO settings. We have placed program participants at internship sites in the following occupational therapy settings:

  • Pediatric occupational therapy
  • Geriatric occupational therapy
  • Rehabilitative occupational therapy
  • Mental health occupational therapy

Clinical Occupational Therapy Placements

VACorps, in partnership with South African universities, offers clinical OT placement options in all of the OT fields mentioned above. We highly recommend going this route if you are a post-grad OT student. Many of the placements include a strong teaching component. You will participate in services that cover both discipline-specific populations and interdisciplinary content so that you become familiar with the roles of other service providers and begin to understand the holistic approach necessary to serve patients with excellence.

We will assist in the process of completing all university internship administration and will ensure that internships meet your necessary university requirements. Clinical OT internships provide you with opportunities to expand your knowledge and gain clinical experience. You will be paired with experienced clinicians as your direct supervisors and will be immersed in a culture of learning that is exciting and will help prepare you for your future career.

Highlights of past clinical OT internships have included the following:

  • Provide daily documentation of group sessions, 1:1 sessions, integrated health, and other reports.
  • Provide a safe and ethical experience that adheres to a professional code of ethics.
  • Collaborate with supervisors to develop clinical and professional skills resulting in entry-level competency by the end of your internship.
  • Get fully involved as a member of an interdisciplinary team.
  • Experience staff meetings, ward rounds and problem-solving sessions and be included in all in-service and team-building opportunities.
  • Be involved in the assessments of patients with diverse presentations while identifying their individual sensory, physical, social and environmental needs.
  • Assist in the development and delivery of individualized intervention programs.
  • Provide evidence-based assessments and recommend the best course of intervention.
  • Evaluate client progress, reassess and alter intervention programs as required

Please note that as per South African law, a clinical internship placement requires registration with a South African university and there are additional student registration fees involved. If you are a candidate for a clinical OT internship, please contact us for more information about registration costs.

Benefits of doing your Occupational Therapy Internship Abroad in South Africa:

  • Satisfy degree and graduate school requirements – Gain certified clinical hours and a letter of recommendation that will count towards your future profession
  • Compliment your theoretical understanding of OT – Work within the occupational therapy field that relates to your area of professional interest
  • Experiential learning – Directly assist South African health care professionals with client-centered assessments, activity analysis, home, school and job site evaluations, promoting wellness, patient writeups and long term patient goal setting
  • Make a difference in the lives of others – connect with your patients on a personal level as you use your skills to improve their everyday lives, and aid their continued progression towards a healthy, happy life.
  • International networking – Acquire international experience with an occupational therapy internship abroad and develop your resume/CV
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Meet past participants:

Sara Hobbs, London, United Kingdom, (2023)

Sara is studying Occupational Therapy at St George's University of London.  She joined the VACorps program on January 2023 and participated in an OT internship at an NGO home for adults with intellectual disabilities [...]

Mollie Wang – Oregon, USA (2020)

Molly is studying her masters in Occupational Therapy at Pacific University.  She joined the VACorps program in January 2020 and participated in an OT internship at a children's hospital in Cape Town. "I came [...]

  • Occupational Therapy Internships Abroad

Sara Mueller – Wiesbaden, Germany (2019)

Sara is in her second year of study towards her B.Sc in Occupational Therapy at University of Hochschule Fresenius in Germany.  She joined the VACorps Program in February 2019 and participated in a clinical [...]

  • Occupational Therapy Internships Abroad

Bailey Poor – Tennessee, USA (2019)

Bailey is studying towards her Bachelor of Science in Therapeutic Recreation at the The University of Tennessee. She joined the VACorps Program in May 2019 and participated in an Occupational Therapy Internship at a [...]

  • Occupational Therapy Internship Abroad

Isabelle Maher— Ohio, USA (2018)

I stumbled upon the VACorps website while google searching for summer internships and instantly fell in love with the idea of coming to Cape Town for an occupational therapy internship, as it is tough to [...]

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