Take a moment with Don

Sonia Lim 14 Sep 2021

Take a moment with Don, RFBI Benhome Masonic Village

When Don retired and moved to Maitland a few years ago, he felt he needed a little something extra in his life. It was his wife who encouraged Don to volunteer when she heard that RFBI Benhome Masonic Village was looking for a bus driver.

Today, Don generously donates his time taking residents on outings by driving their Village bus and regularly having a chat with them. He is thrilled to be able to use his ten plus years of experience working in aged care to support the wellbeing of our residents.

For Don, volunteering is also a chance to create new connections in his community.

“I have become friends with fellow volunteers, the wonderful Lifestyle and Leisure staff and many residents including a centenarian who is an absolute inspiration. Everyone has so many stories to tell.

“When I first started volunteering, I noticed the happiness and contentment of the residents. They have so much to say and lots of life to impart if someone is willing to listen.

“I joke around a lot, but I really care that the residents are being treated with respect and the care they deserve. And I see the dedication that RFBI has to its residents.”

Don is known in the village for making our residents laugh but he also has a special connection with our residents.

“There was a time when I was asked to have a chat with a male resident who for various reasons was not coming out of his room, other than at mealtimes. After chatting to him on two occasions, the next time I saw him I was able to take him out for a walk. Everyone was astounded to see him out and about, and I was chuffed about that.”

Volunteering in an aged care village is an opportunity to give back but also an opportunity to gain something.

“Volunteering in aged care is not easy, it does tug at your heartstrings. But you actually receive more, by way of satisfaction, than you give. The residents are wonderful people who have had full, happy, sometimes sad lives and really enjoy being able to talk to you about it.”

If you’re looking for the opportunity to give back to your community, find out more about volunteering your time for older people. Visit https://rfbi.com.au//how-can-you-help/volunteering/