We understand that there will be many questions that you may have regarding volunteering with us. You can find a FAQ below with some of our commonly asked questions. For more details regarding a specific trip you can visit our projects page. If you have any further questions then please contact us.
Is it safe?
In any country there are potential problems that can occasionally occur. Dental Aid Network works closely with charities in the country we are visiting to safeguard the volunteer’s security. In Kashmir this is the Kashmir Orphan Relief Trust and in Palestine this is The Palestine Children’s Relief Fund. Both of these charities supply us with workers throughout our trip to help us with travel arrangements, accommodation as well as arranging the patients that will be seen.
How much does it cost?
Each trip cost will vary but we try to keep costs as low as possible. Most trips usually cost under £1000 but this can vary with the prices of flights. More precise costs can be found on the individual project pages. This price includes your air fare, internal transport, accommodation, sight seeing tours, a Dental Aid Network tunic and usually your meals too. On top of this other costs would normally include: travel insurance, vaccinations and malaria tablets (if required) and entry visas.
Who pays for the trips?
We ask all volunteers to fund the cost of their own trip and you can do this either from your personal income or by fundraising. If you need any fundraising ideas then please feel free to contact us.
If you feel you would like to fundraise for Dental Aid Network on a personal level we are more than happy for your assistance. We are a purely volunteer based charity and we have not spent a single penny of donations on administration costs (salaries, website etc..). Even when the trustees of Dental Aid Network travel on a dental mission, they pay the same as any other volunteer from their own personal money and not from any donations received.
How many volunteers are on each trip?
This varies per trip – We typically have at least 1 D.A.N. trustee (usually more) and up to 8 volunteers on each trip. Most of the volunteers come from the UK as that is where D.A.N. is based. If you do not live within the UK then you would have to be registered to practice Dentistry in your country and be able to provide evidence of appropriate indemnity.
Will I need vaccination tablets or other medications?
We advise you visit the following website for up to date information:
It is best to visit a local travel clinic or your GP surgery for further advice regarding this.
What hotels do we use?
We try to use clean, comfortable accommodation of a reasonable standard however do not expect to stay in luxury hotels as these missions are not holidays. All of the hotels have english toilets and should have hot water. In Palestine we use The Metropole Hotel in Jerusalem and Al Yasmine Hotel in Nablus. On the Kashmir trip we use The Crown Plaza Hotel for our stay in Islamabad and the Grand Regency Hotel in Mirpur.
What is the daily itinerary?
This will be customised to each trip and you will be given more details in your induction information booklet nearer the departure date. Each trip normally has 5 days of treatment with a day or so travelling and sightseeing before and/or after. Each treatment day tends to be busy and so we try to have a half day midweek to let everyone unwind and also we aim to provide a cpd evening for the local dentists on this evening.
We normally have the use of local dental surgeries that are kindly given to us for use and before the clinical days begin we would spend a session setting up and organising our clinics. For the first clinical day we try to assess all of the patients and then arrange appointments for the rest of the week. The treatment days start early and tend to be full on. There is a break for lunch and we aim to finish by 6pm but it is not uncommon for volunteers to work through lunch and into the evening to try and provide as much treatment as possible. In the evening the team meet for a debrief and to discuss the day’s activities before enjoying an evening meal and some time to relax. We also place a strong emphasis on oral health education and so we take turns to provide clinical treatment and to provide oral health education to the waiting patients.
How much spending money should I bring?
Extra spending money is usually just for souvenirs, gifts and for extra snacks and we estimate that £200 – 300 is usually more than enough. It is simple to exchange money once you arrive and we can help you do this. If you want to bring a bank card then it is recommended to notify your own bank prior to travel so that your debit card will not be rejected overseas but there is no guarantee that your debit/credit card will work abroad.
Will I need a Visa?
For travelling to the West Bank we land in Tel Aviv and a visa is obtained on arrival.
For travelling to Jordan we land in Amman and a visa is obtained on arrival.
For travelling to Kashmir we land in Islamabad and it is necessary to obtain a visa in advance of travel.
Every county has its own visa requirements – you can check the UK government’s travel advice page for more information and if you contact us directly then we can advise on specific situations/trips.