Calcutta Rescue

Calcutta Rescue’s founder, Dr Jack Preger MBE, started to provide free medical treatment for destitute people living on the streets of Kolkata, India, in 1979.  The charity grew around him over the years, and now employs 150 local staff.  They provide medical and educational support to the poorest of the poor – services which are not being provided by anyone else.  They work across six medical clinics in the slums of Kolkata and at two education centres which support over 600 children.  There is also a Fairtrade handicraft project providing employment opportunities for ex-patients and students who cannot find work elsewhere.

We only work in areas of highest need where there is inadequate provision by government, non-profit or private organisations.  We initiate alliances and work collaboratively with other organisations to ensure we deliver quality services to these communities.  We also provide specialist healthcare assistance for the impoverished people who approach us from other districts where such services are deficient.

Mission Statement

Calcutta Rescue works to significantly enhance the wellbeing, learning and living standards of the poorest communities in and around Kolkata.


  • Integrity, transparency and honesty
  • Compassion, empathy and respect
  • Resource-consciousness
  • Continuous learning
  • A collaborative spirit
  • A fighting spirit


To improve the lives of the poorest people in Kolkata by providing free, high-quality, healthcare and education that is not provided by anyone else, and to assist individuals and communities to lift themselves out of poverty. 

Volunteer Roles

Most volunteers at Calcutta Rescue are qualified and experienced medical professionals and will work in the clinics providing high-quality training and support for local staff.  They may also be involved in assessing clinical practice and introducing new ways of working in conjunction with the management team.   

The charity also benefits from volunteers who possess a wide range of non-medical skills, from publicity to research, photography to IT.  These people work from the charity’s management office but will also spend time out at the clinics.  Volunteers will stay either in hostels and homestays or in several flats which are rented to the charity for this use.

A clinical volunteer coordinator is responsible for supporting volunteers in Kolkata.  They also have support with any issues that arise from the recruiting team in the UK.  All volunteers working at the charity will need a Volunteer Visa. Stipends are occasionally available for specific roles.


  • Flights – Volunteer
  • Accommodation – Volunteer
  • Food – Volunteer
  • Transport-In-Country – Volunteer
  • Visa – Volunteer
  • Travel Insurance – Volunteer
  • Medical Indemnity – Volunteer

Volunteer Requirements



Other skills/experience

Not required


Fully licensed in volunteer’s home country, and DBS check.


English (translators available)

Clinical experience

No set minimum

Time commitment

Minimum 3 months

Volunteering experience

None required

Driving license

Not required

Contact Details:



Postal address:

4 Claremont Road, Tunbridge Wells, TN1 1SZ, United Kingdom


+44 7779 259393 (UK)