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Active Retirees : Active Retirees Feb-March 2013
It doesn’t take me too long to work out if they want a visitor or not. I’m happy to just sit with them quietly, make sure they’re comfortable, or do all the talking myself – I’m good at that. RWhen Madeleine isn't visiting poorly patients, she’s extremely busy in Australia or abroad. “He changed my world" Madeleine is the perfect example of how age doesn’t need to get in the way of life. She admits she’s not slowing down that much and keeps busy every day. She’s also the designated night-time driver among friends and Probus members. “When people get older they can get nervous about driving, particularly at night. I actually prefer night driving and, day or night, I’m driving around Adelaide with a carload,” she says. Madeleine remains full of energy and plans. She wants to remain an active member of Highbury Probus and keep travelling, and she has no intention of stopping her rounds of hospital visits. “While I enjoy it and they enjoy it, we are all getting something out of it,” she says. •• LEND A HAND French-speaking Probus members and their family members are invited to take part in an exciting initiative to help reduce the isolation of children from New Caledonia who travel to Sydney for cancer treatment. While the children are at Sydney's Westmead Children's Hospital, volunteers are needed to translate for the Frenchspeaking children and parents, and the English-speaking doctors and nurses, and to lend an ear to the parents and children. PSPL National Sponsor Trade Travel and its network partners will also be organising adventures for the children, families and translators. To get involved, find out more or make a donation, contact Cure our Kids. W: www.cureourkids.com.au E: firstname.lastname@example.org T: (02) 9938 3499 While Madeleine recalls all her visits with great fondness, she has met one patient who changed her world. “He was a Vietnam veteran and, understandably, had a lot of issues,” Madeline recalls. “The first time I went in to visit, I sensed immediately he did not want to talk to me. I respected that and left. “Some time later I got a letter asking me to visit him again. This time I walked in and knew immediately he was ready to talk. And he did. And I listened without judgement. “What I heard in my chats with him was amazing, shocking. But I could feel he was getting so much out of being able to talk to someone. “After these visits I realised that if I never visited anyone again it would be okay. I felt I’d really made a difference.” JOIN THE CONVERSATION W: facebook.com/ probussouthpacific Active RetireesTM | 55
Active Retirees Dec-Jan 2013
Active Retirees April-May 2013