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Bodytree and the local community

Bodytree provides the local indigenous community and other poor people in the vicinity with a primary health care clinic for consultation, treatment and health advice. Around 50 local people visit this clinic a day. We run health education workshops using theatre, audio-visual material, etc.

Our community awareness programmes cover the vital importance of biodiversity, conservation of the forest and basic primary health care techniques employing locally available medicinal plants. Instead of prescribing commercial market medicines, we show people where they can collect fresh, healing, medicinal plants and how to prepare them. This provides cheap and easy access to appropriate, safe and reliable medication for primary health care. The community's respect, understanding and care of local plants increases once they become aware of its role in their good health.

Community foot massage

Bodytree students are required to administer 1008 foot massages during their first year of studies. We offer daily community foot massage at the Outpatients’ Clinic and in the evenings they do them for one another, to wind down at the end of the day. We make yearly journeys to pilgrimage sites where we offer free foot massage to people ending their pilgrimages. This provides us with a useful opportunity to educate the public on the importance of having the right footwear and walking in an efficient well balanced way.

Occupational health education

Bodytree offers occupational health education programmes for the local population. Most come to Bodytree seeking health advice to help with specific occupational health problems such as Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) from computer work, injuries from accidents, body pain, eye problems, skin problems, asthma and poisonous bites. Many work as tappers on the local rubber tree plantations, others drive buses, rickshaws or trucks, loaders who carry heavy weights, tailors or agricultural workers. In such circumstances, Bodytree advises 5 days of treatment, including building an awareness of structural integration, how to use the body without suffering undue stress, yoga and breathing exercises and learning about simple locally available herbal medicine preparations.

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