Our care goes beyond our walls
St Vincent's Foundation Queensland
We are extremely proud of all our staff here at St Vincent’s in Queensland for what they do each day. They all work hard, caring for our patients and residents, improving their skills, and learning about themselves and how they can help those in need. So, when we hear of stories about what they are doing away from their working walls, it takes that pride to a new level.
Registered Nurse Naree Hellyar from St Vincent’s Private Hospital Toowoomba, recently returned from her second trip with Mercy Ships.
Traveling the seas of Western Africa and docking at coastal ports of many developing nations, they provide free surgical, medical, and dental care. They bring hope and healing to people who would never have access to a doctor, let alone a hospital, medication, or surgery.
Naree's role on board is a theatre nurse. The first four weeks of her service in Senegal last year was spent working with ear, nose & throat surgeons from America.
They performed miracles on patient’s faces with NOMA defects, cleft lips and cleft palates. Her first trip in 2020 saw Naree assist a plastic surgeon from South Africa with releasing burns contractures on children.
Naree feels very privileged to have been able to commit her time to such a worthwhile cause. She loved being able to work with like-minded volunteers who shared a passion for helping people in need and showing the world the experience, she has gained when she returned to Toowoomba.
St Vincent's Private Hospital Northside Volunteer Genevieve Taylor recently completed her third trip to Cambodia, where she worked as an assistant in a remote hospital, cleaning, and sterilising theatre instruments for Cambodia Vision's medical team.
During the two-week trip, Genevieve and her husband Cameron, an optometrist, helped give the gift of sight to vulnerable people suffering from debilitating eye diseases.
By volunteering with The Cambodia Vision Foundation, Genevieve and Cameron assisted in providing eye and hearing tests, glasses, sunglasses, and pterygium and cataract surgery, making a difference to many lives.
As a retired maths and science teacher who relocated to Brisbane, Genevieve wanted to meet new people and feel part of a community. Since volunteering at St Vincent's Northside, she has found a lovely social group and feels valued by our staff, patients and their families. "Sometimes the difference you make might feel small but being there for a patient who needs you is special".
St Vincent’s Private Hospital Northside Clinical Nurse Claire Lane recently won the 2022 St Vincent’s Health Australia Individual Award for a simple yet very impactful idea.
Claire founded Save Our Medical Supplies (SOS) in 2012 after witnessing the extreme wastage of clean medical supplies that no longer met Australian standards. SOS provides clean collection bins for staff to put supplies into, then they are picked up and sorted by Claire and her volunteers. From here, they are then sent on shipping containers to developing nations.
“In 2021, we prevented 1.2 million dollars’ worth of useable medical supplies from being sent to landfill. Instead, they were sent to where they were needed,” Claire said. "We've sent supplies all over the globe, from East Timor to Ukraine, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Cambodia, Ethiopia and many more. During the Australian bushfires, we also redirected supples to wildlife charities.”
SOS sent 13 pallets of hospital grade disinfectant to Lismore to help combat the mould outbreak and have also completely stocked a rural health and maternity clinic in Papua New Guinea.
Claire hopes to have an SOS bin in every Australian hospital to ensure nothing usable can be wasted.
Thank you, Naree, Genevieve and Claire, for your dedication and compassion. We are grateful you are all members of our St Vincent’s Family.