In 2018 my mother was diagnosed with terminal cancer and the thought of losing her when she had so much life left to live was heartbreaking. At the time I had never heard of hospice and the idea of sending my mom to spend her last few days away from home was unthinkable. However, our family decided on it being the best option as they could provide her with supplementary care. Thinking back, we could not have made a better decision.
The time spent at Helderberg Hospice during my mom’s final days was extremely tough. There was, however, an element of ease that could undoubtedly be attributed to the extraordinary care provided by the hospice team. From the caring nurses and doctors to the helpful administrators, Helderberg Hospice has the finest selection of staff. It is admirable to see how people working such difficult and emotionally challenging jobs still manage to keep their spirits up to give the best possible care.
A while after my mom passed, I felt drawn back to Helderberg Hospice and looked into volunteering opportunities. I was pleased to get welcomed into the ‘family’ with open arms. They not only provided care for my beloved mother, but it also gave a safe space for our family to cope with the immediate grieving. Volunteering allows me to give back in the slightest way for the remarkable service provided to my mom, as well as other patients and their families.
Death is a naturally occurring process and Palliative Care is essential for people of all age groups, reaching the end their lives for various reasons and illnesses. The staff at Helderberg Hospice and other Palliative Care institutions have a crucial role to play. From my personal experience alone, I have seen how Palliative Care helps give comfort and support to people reaching the end of their life journey, not to mention to those who will be left behind. Seeing how important end of life care is, my passion was sparked in the field and I can only hope to find a way to integrate a Palliative Care component into my future career. Volunteering at Helderberg Hospice has been a blessing, it has taught me so much and I look forward to what is to come!
Written by K-Lee Jubber, Receptionist Volunteer at Helderberg Hospice since May 2019.