Sister Ignatius was unimpressed. 'I hope you are a quick learner. I have a hospital to run.' 'I, er, I promise to do my best.' I stammered, feeling out of my depth. After all, this wasn't a Brownie Badge; I had volunteered to pay my debt back to society by saving lives, as well as hoping to find myself…and a man. Emily Joy puts on her rose-tinted specs, leaves behind her comfortable middle class life as a doctor in York and heads off for two years voluntary work at a remote hospital in Sierra Leone. Emily finds the prospect of life in a rural African village less than enticing. There is no equipment, no water, no electricity and, worst of all, no chocolate to treat her nasty case of unrequited love. Despite this, the Sierra Leoneans she meets (who, after all, have far worse problems to think about) inspire her with their courage and vivacity. Dr Em's poignant and often hilarious adventures show us how fulfilling volunteering can be.