2010-2011 Academic Year
At its core, MEDLIFE is a group of students and
young professionals who have decided to stand up
against the injustice they see in the world.
Over 1.8 billion people worldwide lack access to a
doctor. One of MEDLIFE’s most basic goals is to
bring a doctor to these people.
MEDLIFE is student-run – we believe that a
college student wields incredible power in the
fight against poverty and we want all members to
be aware of this. We want to create and foster
knowledgeable, capable, and motivated student
leaders who can help us in our cause.
MEDLIFE seeks to improve access to Medicine,
Education, and Development for the poorest of the
poor. We have a number of pathways in which we
achieve this mission and we aren’t constrained by
a single platform or methodology.
MEDLIFE works alongside the poor. We believe
that one of the most important things we can do
for the poor is give them a voice. We build
relationships with people and communities,
listening to their problems and working together
to seek out the solution. We seek to bridge the gap
between what the poor have and what they’re
trying to achieve.
We try to work within the existing infrastructure.
MEDLIFE doesn’t want to create a parallel
healthcare system in any of the countries in which
we work, we want to improve the existing systems
to create a long-term, sustainable change.
Founded in 2005 by Nick Ellis as a University of Maine
student group.
Nick organized MEDLIFE’s first medical mission to
Cebadas, Ecuador. Upon returning home, he raised funds
to provide heart surgery for a young boy he had
encountered on the mission.
Over the past 5 years MEDLIFE has expanded to new
schools, refined the Mobile Clinic structure and has recently
created the MEDLIFE Fund to engage in more sustainable
forms of aid.
MEDLIFE has reached tens of thousands of patients in
Ecuador, Peru, and Panama, and we hope to reach hundreds
of thousands more with expanded numbers of Mobile
Clinics and MEDLIFE Fund projects.
Continues to rely on motivated students for the leadership,
expansion, and funding of our organization.
MEDLIFE currently operates Mobile Clinics in the
following locations:
birthplace. We
operate Mobile
Clinics in small
villages located
high in the Andean
mountain range of
central Ecuador.
MEDLIFE also brings Mobile Clinics to the
Amazonian region of Ecuador, delivering aid to
the small, rural villages outside of Tena.
MEDLIFE has recently begun operating Mobile
Clinics in Andean Peru. We work in rural towns
surrounding the ancient Incan capital of Cusco.
main office in
Latin American
is located in the
capital of Peru,
a city over 9
operates Mobile
Clinics in the
poor Pueblos
Jovenes on the
outskirts of
This past Summer MEDLIFE
offered it’s first-ever Mobile Clinic
in Panama, in the district of La
Chorrera outside of the capital city.
Executive Board
CEO: Nicolas Ellis
CFO: Colin Pile
Student Advisory
Board (SAB)
Full-time employees in
Latin America (currently 4)
Undergrads and recent grads
All Chapters
Volunteer and
Fundraise towards
All operations in
Latin America
MEDLIFE Student Chapters are responsible for:
 Participating in Mobile Clinics
 Fundraising toward MEDLIFE Fund projects
 Providing educational opportunities to
students regarding global health
 Hosting regular chapter meetings to promote
each of these activities
Membership is open to the entire student body.
Chapters are directed jointly by the SAB and
chapter officers.
Operated 11 weeklong Mobile Clinics
in Peru, Panama, and
Ecuador, with over
200 students
Brought a doctor to
over 7,500 patients.
MEDLIFE’s inaugural MEDLIFE Fund project brought a new
classroom to the primary school in Telan Playa, Ecuador. Previously,
55 students were packed into a small classroom, in which two
teachers taught simultaneously from opposite sides of the room.
Now, Telan Playa has sufficient teaching space for all students. All
money for the project was raised during our nationwide fundraising
push for the MEDLIFE Fund this past April.
On a Mobile Clinic in Lima this past May, MEDLIFE encountered a patient
whose young daughter had serious developmental defects due to a severely
premature birth. The cause? When 6 months pregnant, she slipped and fell on
the muddy slopes outside of her house in the neighborhood of Las Minas.
MEDLIFE immediately recognized the need for stairways (which in addition
to reducing the risk of accident, also greatly increase the likelihood that the
Peruvian government will bring basic utilities such as water and electricity to
a community). Throughout the Summer, MEDLIFE constructed 3 sets of
stairways in Las Minas, and now plans to team up with the local government
to build 50 sets of staircases in the hillside communities surrounding Lima.
MEDLIFE offered it’s first official MEDLIFE Summer internship
program for undergraduates. MEDLIFE hosted 3 interns in
Riobamba, Ecuador and 3 in Lima, Peru. Interns helped lead
MEDLIFE Mobile Clinics, worked on MEDLIFE Fund projects,
and followed up with patients in need after each Mobile Clinic.
MEDLIFE will offer additional internships for undergrads this
coming Summer.
A small group of students
from Northwestern
University participated in
MEDLIFE’s first operation
in Panama, bringing a
Mobile Clinic to the district
of La Chorrera outside of
the capital city. The clinic
ran very smoothly and
MEDLIFE looks forward to
continuing to work in
In our most recent Mobile Clinic in Lima, Peru,
our group of participants from the University of
Pennsylvania were treated a number of additions
to the Mobile Clinic model. These changes
Each day, a group of students worked apart
from the clinic at a new “Community
Development” station. This involved
working in Las Minas on our stair project.
Over the course of the week the participants,
working hand-in-hand with the people of
Las Minas, built an entire staircase and
retention wall for the community. It was a
great opportunity for MEDLIFE members to
personally get to know the people we serve,
and to make a direct contribution to the
welfare of Las Minas.
Following each clinic day, MEDLIFE brought a speaker to meet
with the group. Speakers included two current MEDLIFE
patients, a local police chief, a Ministry of Health doctor, and a
community president. The goal: increase the participants’
awareness of the myriad problems faced by those living in
extreme poverty.
Our newest MEDVIDA employee, Carlos Benavides, organized
a Mega-Clinic on the final Saturday of the brigade. Working in
conjunction with the Ministry of Health, branches of the local
and national government, and various NGOs operating in
Lima, MEDLIFE was able to provide medical care to over 1100
patients, gynecological exams for nearly 100 women, and
issued national identity cards (often difficult and costly to
acquire, and required for entry into the national insurance plan)
to over 600 children.
Each of these additions to our Mobile Clinic
format was a huge success, both in delivering
increased aid to our patients and in improving
Mobile Clinic participant experience. MEDLIFE
looks forward to continuing to offer such
opportunities on future Mobile Clinics.
Mobile Clinics
 Internships
 National Leadership Positions
 The MEDLIFE Fund
A Mobile Clinic is more than just a medical mission.
A Mobile Clinic represents MEDLIFE’s sincere
commitment to sustainable improvements in
community health. It is our first point of contact with
a local population, and our first means of assistance.
We hire local doctors rather than bringing foreign
doctors from the US. We feel that local doctors are
better equipped to provide care to the local population.
We have a permanent team on the ground to follow up
with all patients who require additional care.
We bring dentists, gynecologists, and other specialists
to provide educational services and preventative care.
The Mobile Clinic provides our first point of contact
with the community. We want to build trusting
relationships with every community in which we work
so that we may deliver better care and MEDLIFE Fund
projects in the future. A Mobile Clinic is the first step
in this process.
Mobile Clinics typically last one week. Each
weekday, MEDLIFE brings our clinic to a
different community. On the weekend,
participants are offered a choice of tourist
Each clinic day, participants will be assigned to a
station. Throughout the week, each participant
will rotate through all 5 stations. Stations include:
Shadowing a Dentist
Shadowing a Doctor
We are also looking to
integrate the “Poverty
Class” series of local
speakers, and the
Development station in
which students work
together with locals on a
development project,
into all future Mobile
We operate Mobile Clinics in Peru, Ecuador, and
You can apply through our website, where all
Mobile Clinic dates and locations will be listed.
You do not need to speak Spanish to participate,
but a basic knowledge can be very helpful.
The participation fee, currently $679.50, covers all
meals and housing (you will stay at a hotel). The
fee does not cover plane tickets or tourism
activities. Participants may also fundraise towards
their trip – for every dollar you raise for MEDLIFE,
50 cents will be taken off of your participation fee.
You do not need to be pre-med to participate – we
believe this is a valuable experience for students of
all academic backgrounds.
MEDLIFE is now offering
Summer and year-round
internships in Ecuador
and Peru. We are seeking
out students and recent
graduates from all
academic disciplines – the
only requirement is that
you have a passion to
help the poor! Please
contact Tommy Flint at
[email protected] for
more information on our
internship program.
The Student Advisory Board oversees all
MEDLIFE Chapter operations across North
America. Student members of the SAB are
directly responsible for running MEDLIFE on a
national level. The SAB will be seeking out new
members throughout the coming academic year.
Please contact SAB co-Chairs Hannah Roberts
([email protected]) and JP Gorham
([email protected]) for more information
on joining the SAB.
The MEDLIFE Fund is MEDLIFE’s initiative to engage in
sustainable, large-scale projects that deliver Medicine,
Education, and Development to the poor. 100% of all
Chapter fundraising and all monetary donations to the
MEDLIFE Fund goes directly to funding these projects,
rather than to any part of MEDLIFE’s operational or
administrative budget. All money intended for the poor
goes to the poor. MEDLIFE has staff on the ground in
Latin America to coordinate and supervise all our
The MEDLIFE Fund gives students an
opportunity to make a sustainable, concrete change in the
lives of the poor.
Become a contributing chapter member or
Apply to join the SAB or for an internship
Participate in a Mobile Clinic
FUNDRAISE! We created the MEDLIFE Fund
so that all students can make a direct
contribution to improving the lives of the poor.
Fundraising is supremely important to
MEDLIFE’s success and all MEDLIFE members
should consider it their duty to assist with our
fundraising efforts.
All proceeds of your chapter’s first fundraiser of the
year will go towards building a new clinic for the
people of Pamplona. This project will benefit over
20,000 people who currently do not have easy access
to a doctor.
CSULB Chapter President:
Julie Smithwick
 562 303 7107
 [email protected]
[email protected]
Internships and Mobile Clinics:
Tommy Flint ([email protected])
Student Advisory Board:
JP Gorham ([email protected])
Hannah Roberts ([email protected])

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