Recognising the bigger picture

When we speak about our laundries with a purpose, we do so with the bigger picture in mind. In every single one of those cycles is a real story of hope and opportunity. Behind every cycle is a person able to show up to work with dignity wearing freshly laundered clothes or a child attending school with pride in a clean uniform. Behind each one of these cycles is a strong and empowered community breaking the cycle of disease while creating meaningful jobs for locals.

And it is not just us that sees this. Dr Gokula Chandran has been visiting our Casuarina laundry every Thursday since 2021. But it’s not just to do his washing. Chandran, as he prefers to be called, is now a crucial cog to our laundry attendant’s day. Armed with a coffee or two, Chandran started visiting the laundry and quickly struck up a good relationship with Sam and the team, and they have been friends since.

The right to health
“I’m a public health person. I have always wanted to help countrymen and their welfare needs like food and transport. I do that as a voluntary thing. They have become like family… after 13 years of this,” said Chandran.

“People look for a ‘reviver’ in the morning to fix hangovers and I thrust coffee or tea to them. I make six/seven coffees a morning and drive around. I need more volunteers to join me.” 

Dr Gokula Chandran drops by the Casuarina laundry each Thursday with a coffee for Sam.

But back to the bigger picture. Chandran has lived in Darwin for 15 years, and he has been on a mission since. Aside from his voluntary work, he has completed a PhD with the Menzies School of Health Research, owned a medical practice, and now runs a painting and decorating company, cheekily called PHD, providing work opportunities for the younger drinkers.

Armed with these credentials, when Chandran says we are providing an important public health service, we certainly agree. 

“I am going to suggest you get a public health award from Luke Gosling OAM MP for this initiative. In terms of the big picture this is a very good idea,” said Chandran. 

“If you could have a place for shower as well, they’ll have the whole package deal and that would be an even better idea.”

Thanks for the support, blue-sky thinking and friendship Chandran!