59 fabulous years

9 January 2018
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The Bucklands Residential Care site played host to a special celebration in January, for some of Southern Cross care's most dedicated volunteers. Between them, these amazing people have contributed a combined 59 years of outstanding service.

Pastoral care volunteers Carmel Windebank and Ruth Whitelum were recognised for 39 and 10 years of service respectively. Archbishop Leonard Faulkner was also recognised for 10 years of service.

Archbishop Faulkner has a long association with Southern Cross Care visiting Father Sylvester Campbell, and all the priests at Francis Murphy Villa who celebrated mass for our residential care communities.

Pat Peak, Pastoral Care Coordinator, talked about the Archbishop's passion for volunteering. “He loves to talk with the residents, carers and staff, listening to their stories, and hearing about their families. He is genuinely interested in them, and they thoroughly enjoy his company,” Pat said.

Pat also spoke at length about Ruth Whitelum, describing Ruth's kind and generous approach with residents. Ruth's supportive and caring nature has helped her to develop lasting friendships with so many people.

Ruth became a volunteer in 2007 after her late husband Ron died. She says the staff and residents at The Pines Lodge gave her so much support when her husband was ill. That inspired her to get more involved in the Southern Cross Care community.

Pat went on to explain Carmel Windebank’s motivation to become a volunteer. Carmel saw how important receiving Holy Communion was to her father, when he was sick in hospital. 39 years later, Carmel's motivation is just as strong. She values the strong Catholic ethos of the organisation, and feels respected and appreciated for the work she does.

Volunteers like Carmel, Ruth and Archbishop Faulkner are a critical part of the Southern Cross Care team. If you’d like to volunteer with Southern Cross Care please call 1800 852 772 or send an email to volunteer@southerncrosscare.com.au.