Volunteers crucial to funding transformational research
There are more than six million volunteers in Australia who freely give up their time to help others, and the PA Research Foundation is lucky enough to have three superstar volunteers of their own.
Margaret Archer, Matthew Arnold and Ewan Arneil all give up hours of their time each week volunteering to help the Foundation raise vital funds for transformational health research, patient support initiatives, and staff education at the PA Hospital in Brisbane.
Christine Butler from PA Hospital's Volunteer Unit, alongside PARF CEO Damian Topp, and volunteers Margaret Archer, Matthew Arnold and Ewan Arneil.
With 'Recognise, Reconnect and Reimagine' being the theme of this year's National Volunteer Week (17-23 May), PA Research Foundation Chief Executive Officer Damian Topp said it was a good reminder to honour the impact the organisation's volunteers have, and the impact of all volunteers.
"Our much-loved volunteers raised more than $27,000 for us last year, which we are incredibly grateful for, but the role they play is much larger and important than just the funds they help us raise," he said.
"We couldn't do what we do in funding researchers to undertake their vital work or funding patient support initiatives to improve the patient experience here at the hospital without their support."
"The intangible benefit of having these friendly and big-hearted people representing the Foundation around the hospital is immeasurable."
The three volunteers pitch in wherever they are needed for the organisation, but importantly they raise vital funds through selling raffle tickets around the hospital campus and manning the Foundation's sales booth to sell the popular duck merchandise.
Margaret Archer who has volunteered for the Foundation for seven years, said she began volunteering because she was blown away by the level of care and professionalism shown to her partner Allan when he was a patient.
"My partner was treated at PA when he was diagnosed with Lewy body dementia, and how he was treated was fabulous, all the staff were just really good to both of us, I couldn't fault them," she said.
"Volunteering was the best way for me to give back to the hospital and say thank you, I really enjoy it."
Ms Archer who also volunteers with the hospital itself said she enjoys being a part of the wider Foundation team and has no plans to retire from her volunteering commitments yet.