Cancer Council WA celebrates one year in operation at Fiona Stanley Hospital

Fiona Stanley Hospital Cancer Centre volunteers Ian Hancock, Rae Ritchie and Colleen Rapanaro.
Fiona Stanley Hospital Cancer Centre volunteers Ian Hancock, Rae Ritchie and Colleen Rapanaro.

THE Cancer Council WA cancer information hub and volunteer program at Fiona Stanley Hospital celebrated one year in operation by extending support to cancer patients with access to specialised iPads.

The electronic tablets provide patients and their families with easy and instant information on Cancer Council WA’s extensive support services.

Program co-ordinator Yvette Hufschmidt said the tablets were an important tool to help volunteers assist cancer patients.

“The way the iPads have been set up is really intuitive, with users able to navigate our Compass app easily and find lots of useful information such as how to cope with cancer and what support services are available,” she said.

Ian Hancock, a Cancer Council WA volunteer at the cancer hub, said the introduction of the tablets had already proven to be highly successful.

“Sharing info on our new tablets has been really well received by older patients,” he said.

“The iPads are a bit of an icebreaker with patients and helps to start conversations which can be tough at times.”

Mr Hancock said volunteers at the hub were a vital link in helping visitors to the cancer centre.

“I hope I help them think more positively and brighten up their day with a bit of banter, and help them go home with a smile on their faces.

“I let them guide me on what they want to talk about, whether it’s footy, their work or listening to their story; I just help them wherever possible.”

Mr Hancock said volunteering not only helped patients, but also improved his own outlook on life.

“I get a sense of purpose and wellbeing from volunteering. The patients help to brighten me up and I go home with a positive outlook and feeling,” he said.

“A patient knitted a scarf for me which was really nice, and a little sign that they appreciate the support we give.”

For more information about the cancer hub or to enquire about becoming a volunteer at one of Cancer Council WA’s hubs, or call 13 11 20.