The Sharewood Project: Giving Healthcare, Providing Practice

This is the documentary I created with Alyssa Skiba, Jessica Bal, and Kelsey Bell, for our Tufts University ExCollege class, Producing Films for Social Change in the fall of 2009.

When we began our filmmaking process, the debate over health care reform had penetrated the national consciousness. While Massachusetts passed the Massachusetts health care reform law in 2006, many residents still lack proper health insurance. Tufts University’s very own free health clinic, the Sharewood Project, run by undergraduates, Tufts University School of Medicine students, and volunteer physicians, provides free walk-in health care to those who in need. In this private sector solution to the gaps in health care, the benefits are shared – patients receive free services and medical students gain valuable hands-on experience. Our film explores many facets of the project – the busy lives of funny, compassionate, and stressed medical students who run it, its influence on the patients who need it, and the issues such as funding and language barriers it faces. While cultivating documentary filmmaking skills, we also developed an intimate perspective on the problems and solutions behind a major social issue. Beneath the partisan fervor televised on nightly news, there are real human beings in need and creative professionals yearning to help.

This film has been featured on the Sharewood Project’s website and in the Tufts University Admissions Viewbook.

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