Despite the COVID-19 shutdown the Grenfell Palliative Care Volunteers program passed its first milestone, having been run in the town for a year.
March 23, 2020 marked the first anniversary of Grenfell Palliative Care Volunteer Service, however with the current COVID-19 restrictions this passed without being celebrated.
The Grenfell Palliative Care Volunteers are a dedicated, hardworking team of local's from Grenfell and surrounding villages, and their support has proven too been invaluable for many in the community.
The primary purpose of the volunteers is to support people with a life-limiting illness and their carers, as well as those suffering the effects of social isolation not only due to COVID-19 but in general.
During COVID-19 restrictions, the volunteer group has not been able to provide the face to face support they had been able to prior to the pandemic, however they have been providing support over the telephone with patients and carers, to ensure that those people in need are not forgotten.
Once restrictions are eased, the Palliative Care Volunteers will once again be able to offer face to face, in person support for those in the community who need support and all the volunteers are very eager to get back to it and do so.
People receiving palliative or end of life care will have the option of receiving social support from volunteers in Grenfell and surrounding villages of the Weddin Shire Council area.
Another celebration which was missed due to the shutdown was National Palliative Care Week.
National Palliative Care Week was the 24th to the 30th of May 2020, but the work of the volunteer team continues.
The theme of this year's celebration was: "Palliative Care... It's more than you think". National Palliative Care Week brings awareness to the community by conversation as well as honouring those who work and volunteer.
The Palliative Care Volunteer's Service is a collaboration between Cowra/Grenfell Meals on Wheel, Community Care clinicians from the Western NSW Local Health District, Grenfell Community Health, and volunteers from the Grenfell Community.
We hope to be able to resume our monthly meeting where we develop new skills to help support the Palliative community as COVID-19 restriction ease.
For more information contact Denise Makin at Cowra/Grenfell Meals on Wheels on 6342 4165 or Lynne Peterson at Grenfell Community Health on 6349 1777.