By Team Philippines

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A little bit of context

Access to high quality healthcare services, resources and expertise helps to alleviate disease and improve quality of life for everyone. We in Australia are lucky to have access to our health system, which is recognised as one of the best in the world. 

But there’s a problem

The community in Calauan in the Philippines has very limited access to healthcare. Members of the community face difficult and debilitating health problems. These can be solved with just a little bit of attention from a healthcare professional and minimal resources. 

Here’s what we’re doing about it

Team Philippines is a healthcare volunteering initiative that involves medical students from The University of Notre Dame, Sydney. Under the leadership of Dr Charlotte Hespe, we travel to the community of Calauan in the Philippines to provide medical treatment and maintain community projects that have been developed to enhance the lives of the local people.

We run a medical clinic and pharmacy, a dental service, a women’s health clinic, an eye clinic and a collection of other carefully developed and sustainable projects. We travel twice a year with a holistic health approach to provide basic needs for a community living in poverty. On one of our recent trips, we conducted over 400 medical consultations, about 180 eye examinations and provided 100 pairs of glasses.

The project has two main goals:
- to improve the long term health of the community in Calauan, Laguna, Philippines, and
- to introduce Australian Medical students to hands-on experiences of holistic health care in an impoverished rural setting and enhance their understanding of the role of long-term social justice projects.

You can join us

It would be greatly appreciated if you could take the time to make a donation to support our work here.

Please note: All volunteers on the team cover all of their own travel and living expenses with personal funds and scholarships, so your donation goes straight to funding resources that directly benefit the community.

Your donations are used to buy folate supplements, iron supplements, pharmaceuticals, medical supplies (e.g., dressings, saline, instruments, sterilization, etc.), dental supplies, pairs of glasses, and other equipment and consumables. Thank you very much!

More information about the team is available here:

Thank you for your support!

And here’s some amazing perks for supporting us that you can’t live without

We and the Calauan community will be forever grateful! And we'll provide you with updates on the projects as the year progresses, with photos and videos. Thank you again so much for being an inspirational supporter of our healthcare work! 

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Team Members


Abigail Vallejo

Alex Mullin

Antonia Watson

Brandon Do

Charlotte Hespe

Clare Taylor

Courtney Cini

Daniel Madani

Daniel Mastroianni

Dennis Nguyen

Genevieve Shrayer

Georges Cini

Haidar Al Saffar

Jaimi Manfield

Janice Louis

Jarryd Ludski

Jean Cabides

Jess Medland

Joshua Richards

Joshua Richards

Kate Petrie

Krishna Muralidharan

Linda Beukes

Manuela Vancea

Matt Soderstrom

Mizna Shahbaz

Molly Clifton

Monique de Pedro

Nathaniel Price

Nikki Gouvoussis

Paul Satouris

Prashanth Naidoo

Sam Carr

Sophie Ootes

Stefanie Benitez

Zoe Wood