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Poppy the Poodle celebrates volunteering milestone

Friday, October 06, 2017

A dedicated volunteer with a difference has marked a magical milestone.

Pet therapy dog Poppy has been presented with a service badge acknowledging her work as a Wantirna Health volunteer for the past five years.

Poppy is a volunteer at Wantirna Health’s East Ward, which is a palliative care ward. The dedicated poodle provides comfort to patients and their loved ones, and also brings a smile to staff and others in the hospital.

With Poppy every step of the way has been her owner Carol White. Carol said she and Poppy love volunteering at Wantirna Health.

“When she enters a patient’s room, you can see their spirits lift. She brings a wonderful level of positivity to those on the ward.”

Poppy is just one of 65 volunteers at Wantirna Health. Volunteers at Wantirna perform a range of roles, including palliative care, falls prevention, cardiac rehabilitation, chaplaincy, and driving patients to appointments.

In acknowledgement of their continued fine work, a Camellia dedicated to the volunteers has been planted in the hospital’s garden.

East Ward Volunteer Team Leader Pam Redcliffe said each of Wantirna Health’s volunteers were caring, compassionate people.

“Our volunteers go above and beyond to ensure our patients are looked after. That extra level of care is really appreciated by them and their families. It is incredibly rewarding being part of the volunteering team here.”

Wantirna Health Director of Nursing Kathy Marshall said volunteers were a vital part of the Eastern Health team.

“They work shoulder to shoulder with our nurses, doctors and other staff to ensure we provide the best care possible to our patients and their families. We can’t thank them enough for the wonderful work they do every day.”

To find out more about volunteering at Wantirna Health, call 9895 4658 or email volunteers@easternhealth.org.au