It takes a special type of person to put their hand up to be a palliative care volunteer. Nine of those special people are set to join the ranks at Volunteers for Palliative Care in the next few weeks.
The Maitland service held their annual recruitment drive earlier this year. The prospective volunteers completed a course throughout April and May.
The last step is an orientation at Maitland Hospital before they officially start their roles as palliative care volunteers.
Volunteers for Palliative Care co-ordinator Judith Robinson said the volunteers will assist in three main areas.
They will provide home respite and companionship, specialised transport for patients and hospital visitation.
Two of the new volunteers, Beverley Peachman and Vernessa Mullins, have a background in health care and wanted to help those in need.
Ms Peachman has had family members who have used palliative care services and needed to fill in time, so she approached the organisation to help out.
Ms Mullins currently works in home care and put her hand up after seeing a sign out the front.
Both women will work in all three main areas of the volunteer organisation.
Ms Peachman said she hoped to be able to give the carers a bit of respite and provide companionship to the patients.
“People who have chronic illnesses can become isolated,” she said. “It will be good to give them a bit of company.”
Meanwhile, Volunteers for Palliative Care is running a fundraiser raffle. The main prize is accomodation and breakfast for two at North Sydney Harbourview.
The tickets will be for sale at Bunnings Maitland on June 9 and 23, Thornton Shopping Centre on June 26 and 27 and at Stockland Green Hills on July 22.