VOLUNTEERS are needed for a new Cancer Council service, offering emotional support and respite for palliative patients and their carers, which is being rolled out in the Upper Hunter over the coming months.
Cancer Council community programs coordinator Erin Daley says the Cancer Council NSW Palliative Care Volunteer Service will address the often-overlooked requirements of the carers, as well as supporting patients who live alone.
“Palliative care services do a great job looking after the physical care and medical treatment for patients and Cancer Council’s service will offer emotional support and respite for carers and patients,” she said.
The service, which is being supported by Hunter New England Health Local Health District funding, will see trained volunteers spend time with palliative patients allowing their carers to take some time out.
“Carers often have a stressful and demanding job,” Ms Daley said.
“If you are caring for someone with a life limiting illness, it is important to look after yourself as well.”
Cancer Council NSW has identified access to palliative care as important in improving the quality of life of patients, carers and their families facing a life-limiting illness.
A similar pilot program has been rolled out by Cancer Council NSW in Newcastle and Lake Macquarie over the past year.
This new initiative in the Upper Hunter will aim to build on the success of that pilot program but also respond directly to the needs of the Upper Hunter community.
Initially, a three-to-six-month pilot service will be rolled out in Muswellbrook, with the service then to extend to the wider Upper Hunter.
Anyone interested in finding out more about becoming a volunteer or learning further about the service is invited to attend an information session in the Seminar Room, Muswellbrook Library, on Tuesday, July 25, from 11am.
Alternately, Erin Daley can be contact directly on 0402 615 276 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org