The David Whittet Foundation
Changing the world, one project at a time...

The David Whittet Foundation - Our Vision

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Our aim is to change the world, one project at a time!

Since spending time in India as a young doctor, David Whittet has been passionate about supporting colleagues in the developing world and improving the quality of life for some of the most disadvantaged people on our planet.

Of his experience in India as a young doctor, David wrote: "It proved a tremendous culture shock. This was medicine in the raw and on a scale I had never experienced before. I came back to my clinic thinking we have so much, the most modern and up to date equipment and teaching methods, yet these doctors in India have so little, lacking the basic equipment we take for granted. I was deeply impressed by the doctors in India and how much they achieved with minimal facilities. Experiencing such inequities as a young man has given me a lifelong desire to help and support colleagues overseas, particularly in developing countries where family doctors strive to achieve high quality medicine, often against seemingly impossible difficulties."

David's project to develop family medicine in rural Orissa state, one of India's poorest regions, was supported by the World Organization of Family Doctors (Wonca). The project has proved extremely successful and David is adapting the model for a rural community in Cambodia. David received a second Wonca Foundation Award, presented at the World Conference of Family Doctors in Mexico in May 2010, in support of the Cambodia project.

Delivering the inaugural Wesley Fabb Oration at the opening ceremony of the Wonca Asia Pacific Regional Conference in Kuala Lumpa, Malaysia, on 31 March 2002, Professor Fabb, said: “Should we be concerned about the plight of general practitioners in India or Zimbabwe struggling to provide health care to a poor and often unappreciative population, under difficult economic and political circumstances? Often inadequately trained, short of supplies, poorly paid, overworked, harassed – should we care? Some do. New Zealander, David Whittet, went to Orissa State in India on a Wonca Foundation Award of just £1000 sterling and worked marvels. That can be repeated, if the motivation is there.”

David is equally passionate about changing the world through the medium of film. An award winning independent film maker himself, David is committed to supporting aspiring film makers with a positive message for humanity. Such projects can be difficult to fund commercially and the foundation aims to provide such film makers with a voice for their work.