Volunteers in the spotlight

Sydney Adventist Hospital celebrated its 314 volunteers for National Volunteer Week, with two of the volunteers featuring on television news program 10 News First.

The hospital took the opportunity to acknowledge and recognise the challenging work undertaken by the volunteers and the valuable contribution they make. Volunteers perform a range of tasks across various departments and wards which allow hospital staff to provide an exceptional level of care to the community.

“Our volunteers are incredibly important to this organisation, and we admire their contribution, dedication and the care they have for our patients, staff and families,” Adventist HealthCare CEO Brett Goods said. “We are enormously grateful to each and every one of them.”

Daniel Doody interviews Lyn Mackay.

“More than 30,000 volunteer hours have been given in the past calendar year alone,” San Volunteers manager Patrina McLean said.

“Since volunteers started in 1973, they have contributed more than 1,782,000 hours to the San. The dedication and generosity of time given to the San by the San volunteers is awe-inspiring.”

This year 32 volunteers were recognised for significant years of service ranging from 10 to 35 years. Among them were Lyn Mackay and Sue Gibson who were recognised by Channel 10 for their 25 years of service, donating their time to help patients and their families. Both Felicity Gerard-Helps and Rosemary Taylor have given their time at the San for more than three decades.

The volunteers were treated to morning tea.

Lyn Mackay said she became a volunteer after her husband had quadruple bypass surgery on Christmas Eve 36 years ago “and received the most wonderful, dedicated care”.  

“He was young and terrified and to this day he remembers a beautiful nurse sitting beside his bed holding his hand for a long while and being so positive and reassuring,” she said. “I decided there and then that I would love to try to give back some of this loving care. I have now been volunteering at the San for 25 years and my day at the San is a special highlight in my week. I love volunteering.”

“The San is so blessed to have such generous people who contribute their time,” added Mrs McLean. “There will always be something else to do with our time, there will always be somewhere else we can be, but our San volunteers choose to be at the San.”

National Volunteer Week was held May 20-26. Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) volunteer Eddy Johnson was also featured on 10 News First. He has been providing free counselling sessions at ADRA’s Blacktown community centre for more than 15 years. Click here to see how Mr Johnson is making a difference.