For Vada Murdoch, The Wesley Hospital’s volunteers provided comfort and care while her husband was being treated for cancer in the Oncology Ward.
Nineteen years on, Vada, her daughter Tamra Alexander and granddaughter Louise all generously donate their time to the Wesley. All three generations of the family wanted to give back to the hospital which had supported them through a hard time in their lives.
“I have been volunteering for 19 years,” Vada said.
“I remember the volunteers in their pink aprons offering comfort and support during those days when I would be here with my husband. I wanted to give back a little bit of what they gave me.”
The Corinda resident knows how stressful and frightening a hospital stay can be for patients and their loved ones.
“I’ve always felt that volunteering is very rewarding,” Vada said.
“You get out much more than you put into it. I love being on the information counter because you are able to guide people who may be stressed or frightened to the places they need to go.”
During Louise’s childhood, one day of each school holiday would be spent helping her grandmother out at the Wesley.
“I remember coming in to the Wesley with Nan when I was eight-years-old,” Louise said.
“We would meet so many people and I’d help out with a lot of the smaller tasks – it was a lot of fun. When I started at university, Nan suggested I started volunteering myself.
“I like feeling like I’m involved in the community and being an active part of the community.”
For registered nurse Tamra, volunteering in the Wesley Emergency Centre is a way of keeping involved in the medical community while she takes a break from working.
"I like being there even though I’m not working,” Tamra said.
“I like being around the patients and everyday running of the ward. I’ve got a nice life and it’s nice to be able to give back to the patients in the emergency department.”
The Wesley Hospital Volunteer Manager Gary Pember said on average, The Wesley Volunteers provide 5,000 hours of voluntary service per month, from driving patients to and from their appointments to guiding visitors entering the hospital.
“Our volunteers are a special group of people from all ages and walks of life. They are truly a dedicated team who deserve our appreciation for a job well done,” he said.