Every 2 years Palliative Care NSW pauses to recognise the efforts and talents of one of the Palliative Care volunteers with the Volunteers Supporting Palliative Care Award. This year we decided to focus on paediatric Palliative Care volunteers.
The 2015 award recipient for is Joe Stanioch from Bear Cottage. Joe received his award from NSW Minister for Health Jillian Skinner on Wednesday.
His colleagues at the children’s respite and palliative care service wrote:
“Twice a week, for the last 11 years, Joe traveled a 4 hour round trip on his journey to and from Bear Cottage.
As a ‘general volunteer’ his role encompasses anything from housekeeping tasks, maintenance to driving the Bear Cottage bus to pick up a family who would otherwise be unable to make the trip.
A jack-of-all-trades, there is no job is too big or small. If the chef is away, Joe will arrive with his recipes and knives ready to cook-up a storm for the families and staff in residence. This may be for weeks at a time and it sees him arriving at 8am and not leaving until 7pm.
On a number of occasions Joe has saved Bear Cottage from potential disaster. Twice in the last few years he has been on hand to brave torrential rain which caused flooding and damage to Bear Cottage. Braving horrendous conditions he cleared drains, laid sand bags and stopped the oncoming flood waters before they reach the doors of Bear Cottage and cause destruction and havoc.
Joe has worked tirelessly for us and is constantly focused on helping in any way the incredibly hard journey for our children. Through his wonderful sense of humour and compassionate personality, he has touched the lives of many of our children and families.”