The Free Clinic, Riverdale, Toronto
By Alexis Touyz
On a beach in Mexico a few years ago, Ananda More and I were talking about Leptospirosis and how one person can change the outcome of an epidemic disease in a country. Specifically we talked about the cholera epidemics in Cuba and the amazing work of one homeopath who developed alternative ways to deal with cholera.
Out of this grew the idea for a community clinic; one which would make homeopathic medicine and treatment available to people who needed it and who could not afford it. The focus was to provide free homeopathic care to people who wanted it.
We realized that we already had a space in our clinic and a network of other homeopaths who might volunteer time and we started the clinic. Initially Ananda and I worked but Ananda felt stretched as she was working on her film Magic Pills: Promise or Placebo and left it to me to run. The clinic took on a like of its own. David Brule, co-owner of Riverdale Homeopathy joined and then our fabulous friend and homeopath Beth Landau-Halpern. This team has been running the clinic ever since. It has now expanded to include a space for recently qualified homeopaths to observe.
The clinic essentially deals with acute cases which means we focus on the main presenting issue, follow up monthly and ask only for the cost of medication and. We have worked with people suffering from conditions like kidney stones, anxiety, depression, eczema, infertility and whatever else may present on the day. Teams of two take cases unless we are so busy that we can’t manage to back up or check on each other.
The clinic has been very successful and there has been interest in setting up others in Toronto.
Being a homeopath is a political choice because it has been under much attack in recent years and has only recently been regulated in Ontario. For the people involved in the clinic it is a way of demonstrating an important ethical responsibility. This service is also a way to give back to the community. We run it out of our dedication to homeopathy, that it is important for health and healing and provide the community with the option to try this system of health treatment
The Free Clinic takes place the 3rd Sunday of every month from 11am-4pm, to learn more or book an appointment please call Riverdale Homeopathy at 416-778-0085