When you talk with Ed McGauran about the years he spent caring for his elderly parents, you can hear in his voice the emotions of that time.
“Mum had dementia,” Ed says. “It’s hard, you know, caring for someone. Usually you don’t have any training, and there’s not much support, and there are no days off.”
Which is why he has so much appreciation for the Planned Activity Group that runs out of BRHS’ Ross Street campus. His Mum was a regular participant in the group, and Ed’s face brightens noticeably when he talks about it.
“That group is absolutely fantastic,” he says. “For Mum to be able to meet new people and do different activities, and for me to be able to have little break, it really meant a lot to us.”
Ed’s Mum passed away a few years ago. But Ed has not forgotten those days, and he is now generously giving back to the hospital community as a volunteer in our Facilities Department.
Not one to shirk hard work, for two days a week Ed rolls up his sleeves to tackle one of the least popular jobs here at BRHS – cleaning the fleet cars.
“Someone needs to do this,” he says, before listing a few other ways he’d like to keep the cars in good shape. “I’d like to see some kind of carport, or a covering. And rubber mats would be good, too. You’ve got to protect the investment.”
Ed was recognised for his hard work and the support he shows BRHS staff with an award for outstanding volunteer service last week.
Our Facilities Team Leader, Sam Dipalma, was full of praise for Ed and his contribution to the hospital.
“Ed is a great character to have around the workspace, and he always has an interesting story or two to share with us all,” Sam says. “He is very conscientious about his work tasks, and takes great pride in what he does.”
For Ed, the satisfaction in his work is about more than clean cars.
“The people are friendly here,” he says. “I like coming in and being able to meet new people, to talk to people.”
Ed McGauran is one of the many great volunteers that power BRHS.
If you are interested in volunteer opportunities with us, visit www.brhs.com.au/volunteers-fundraising