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Our Team

Altus Resource Trust relies on skilled volunteers who are willing to give their time visiting the Pacific Islands where they make use of and share their skills.  Because of low population numbers,  it is difficult for countries in the Pacific Islands to train and retain specialists in many fields, not just health.  As we live in a neighbouring country,  therapists and other health professionals can travel to these Island nations to share their skills and make a huge difference in the lives of people with disabilities and their families.

  • Sue Donnell
    Sue, physiotherapist, is the founder of Altus Resource Trust and coordinates the work of the organisation. She began working with children with cerebral palsy in India in 2002, travelling there twice a year for spend a few weeks to assess, train and provide basic equipment. Since 2006 Sue has worked in the Pacific Islands, travelling there a number of times each year. She worked for 12 years at a special school and currently works for a private provider of therapy and related services. Sue coordinates the work of Altus Resource Trust and is the main contact person.
  • Sue Fairhall
    Sue, an occupational therapist, oversees the wheelchair service that Altus provides.Sue has extensive experience with wheelchairs and seating. She brings her passion to see people sitting well in wheelchairs that match their needs, to her work with Altus Resource Trust. Sue is employed by Accessable and Specialist Rehab Services in Auckland.
  • Shamus Fairhall
    Shamus is a clinical orthotist and often works as a wheelchair technician with Sue when in the Islands. He has been observed making a functioning power chair out off two discarded wheelchairs. Shamus is director of MoSI labs in Auckland. Sue and Shamus often take their sons on their trips to the Islands.
  • Amy Mepham
    Amy is a physiotherapist who lives in Dunedin where she works as a clinical supervisior and at a special school. Amy coordinates Altus Resource Trust teams who work in Vanuatu.
  • Kathy Dwyer
    Kathy is a physiotherapist who has worked for many years with people with spinal cord injuries (paraplegics and tetraplegics). Kathy heads the spinal cord injury team of therapists and other health professionals working in the Pacific Islands with Altus Resource Trust. She works in Christchurch for Laura Fergusson.
  • Frances Coutts
    Frances is an occupational therapist who works with Altus in Samoa, Vanuatu and Tonga with people with spinal cord injuries. Frances works for a therapy and assessment provider in Whangarei.
  • Duncan Coutts
    Duncan has numerous practical skills which he has put to use on trips with Frances Coutts, working as her wheelchair technician. Duncan has embarked on a project working with a local builder in Samoa to provide modifications to bathrooms, ramps and paths for the houses of people with disabilities.
  • Frances Bay
    Frances is a nurse who has specialised in working with people with spinal cord injuries. She has taken a number of trips to Tonga to work with the Mango Tree Centre. Frances works for ABI community services and Bay Rehab in Tauranga.
  • Ann Recordon
    Ann is a physiotherapist who has spent time in Samoa and Tonga, teaching field workers and parents of children with cerebral palsy. Ann is a Bobath tutor and spends most of her time in her home in Wanaka.
  • Judi Winter
    Judi is a physiotherapist who spent a year in Samoa with one of our partner organisations at that time, the Loto Taumafai Early Intervention team. As a result of Judi and other therapists' input into this team, they have a strong knowledge base and do not require our assistance at this time. Judi has also worked with Altus in Tonga and Vanuatu. Judi works for the Department of Education in West Auckland.
  • Carolyn Simmons Carlsson
    Carolyn, a registered occupational therapist and senior Bobath/NDT Tutor, has taken part in a number of teaching and clinical intensives in Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu. Carolyn has a private practice in supervision and consultation.
  • Jo Burborough
    Jo, a physiotherapist, and her fiance are part of our work in Vanuatu. Jo works with adults in Auckland and we are looking forwards to increasing our involvement with adults with disability in Vanuatu. Marc Burborough, Jo's husband, works as Jo's wheelchair technician and general DIYer when they are on trips together.
  • Seating to Go
    Each year Seating to Go, a wheelchair and seating service based in the middle of the North Island, send a wheelchair therapist and technician to work for a week with one of our partners.