What was your background before volunteering with Advance Care Planning Australia? 

I have a healthcare background in peri-operative nursing spanning nearly 40 years, both in Victoria and interstate.  

What led you to begin volunteering?  

I couldn’t see myself “retiring” when I left the paid workforce. I needed to involve myself in something that was meaningful to me and would provide me with a sense of purpose and accomplishment.  Utilising my healthcare background seemed an obvious way to do this.  When I saw the advertisement for Advance Care Planning Volunteer Community Ambassadors in 2011, I knew that I’d found my niche.  

What is your favourite thing about volunteering with Advance Care Planning Australia?  

I enjoy both the camaraderie of working with a group of like-minded people, and the challenge of developing a good understanding of the advance care planning legislation in the different jurisdictions around Australia.  
What gives me the most satisfaction is talking to people out in the community or on the National Advance Care Planning Support Service. I’ve had interesting and challenging conversations out in the community. I hope people leave a community presentation with lots to think about. Working a Support Service shift, I never quite know what’s going to come out of the end of that phone. I hope the caller feels that they are talking with someone who is listening to them, and who is capable of providing the assistance they’re wanting.  

What’s one thing you wish more people knew about advance care planning?  

I came across a nice quote some time ago that I think sums up the importance of advance care planning for each of us.  It says that “we are all travelling to the same destination – and we can’t change that.  But we can change the way that we get there.” I think advance care planning has an important part to play in how we get there!  

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