KOALA KIDS INTERN PROGRAM

We are proud of our growing intern program, attracting secondary and tertiary students with a range of interests from Melbourne University, GTRS, Lauriston Girls School and De La Salle, Malvern.

Haresh (aka Harry) has joined us for four months to manage our volunteer applications and hospital registrations. Amanda Ang completed her internship which she undertook as a unit in her psychology major to complete her arts degree. Amanda enjoyed being exposed to lots of different aspects of Koala Kids and having endeared herself to our Monday team we are all tickled pink that she wants to stay on as a regular volunteer.

Four Lauriston girls are completing their Lauriston Honors program at Koala Kids.  The VCE students are being exposed to many areas including writing blogs for our website and other hands-on tasks to enhance their appreciation of the support we provide families in the cancer centres.

This week we welcomed Zara Carter, Ellie Johns and Natalia Oberoi-Kearney starting their Duke of Edinburgh Blue community experience and year 9 student James Suffolk is working in the office each Tuesday this term as part of De La Salle’s companionship program .

NEW VOLUNTEERS – MAY 2018

Koala Kids fast growing volunteer network is as diverse in culture as it is in age and experience.

We welcome our newest volunteers Emma Barham, Zoe Potter, Hassan (aka Hass) Bakkar, Patrick (aka Paddy) Kerr, Allie Veal,  Georgie Landale, Olivia Henderson, Lorrie Pennefather and Felicity Carter.

Emma Barham

Emma is our new volunteer at Peter Mac. She is facilitating activities with the children attending the paediatric radiotherapy service clinic each Wednesday morning with Stef, music therapist.  Emma herself spent very long periods in hospital as a child, and thus has an understanding and personal compassion for sick children

Last year Emma, a Gennazano student was a recipient of the Premier’s VCE Awards, recognised as a top performing student for her outstanding academic achievement.

Emma is a positive and enthusiastic person who hopes to be a paediatric oncologist in the future.

Zoe Potter

Zoe is one of our registered volunteers at The Royal Children’s Hospital, and is a great addition to our bubbly Monday morning team. She studies Commerce at Melbourne University, majoring in management and marketing, as well as coaching junior netball in her spare time.

Hass Bakkar

Hass is a professional tennis player who joined Koala Kids to volunteer in Hospitals. Hass played tennis internationally throughout his secondary schooling years, educating himself online. Through his career he has helped coach and develop young players who see him as a role model, and he hopes to use his positive energy and charisma to make happy help children with cancer.

Patrick Kerr

Paddy had a huge week last week. After debuting for Carlton FC on Sunday, he enjoyed his first Monday with our team at The Royal Children’s Hospital.

Paddy is not the first in his family to volunteer with Koala Kids either – he joins his grandmother Judy Potter, aunties Judy Mullen and Linda Kerr, cousins Grace Kerr, Sophie and Jack Mullen and Jeanne Mitchell as well as his sister Ruby.  Might consider renaming us Kerr-ala Kids!

Allie Veall

Allie joined Koala Kids to volunteer at The Royal Children’s Hospital and Monash Children’s Hospital. She is also getting involved with our events committee. Balancing her marketing degree, running her own business and volunteering with Koala Kids, it is clear that Allie is a driven, motivated and caring person.

Georgie Landale

While managing her own catering business, Georgie has registered as a visiting volunteer at Monash with Koala Kids. With a lengthy nannying and babysitting resume, we are sure that Georgie will be a delightful addition to both Koala Kids and to the Monash Children’s Cancer Centre.

Olivia Henderson

Liv joined Koala Kids through our partnership with Carnival for Kids, program partner of our school holiday program. Olivia is studying nursing and is looking forward to facilitating school holiday activities at Monash and volunteering with Koala Kids thereafter.

Lorrie Pennefather

Lorrie has an extensive background in events and catering, and has joined our team as a volunteer at both RCH & Monash Children’s Hospital. Lorrie is extremely well travelled and intelligent, as well as kind hearted and giving, making her a perfect match for Koala Kids.

Felicity Carter

Felicity is a good friend of our program director, Mandy Mandie, and has decided to lend a helping hand in the office, as well as volunteering at our wrap bar for Mother’s Day. With a giving and generous nature, Felicity offers help wherever required no matter how medial the task may be.

MONASH HEALTH VOLUNTEERS

Six Koala Kids volunteers undertook the registration process at Monash Health to become regular volunteers at Monash Children’s Cancer Centre. Pixie Cohen, Mandy Mandie, Georgie Landale, Olivia Henderson, Lauren Bowe and Jessica Bucci completed the 60 minute online training as well as the on-site induction program and are looking forward to providing the kids and their families activities, morning tea and other programs.

KOALA KIDS A REGULAR AT PETER MACCALLUM CANCER CENTRE

We are very excited to announce that Koala Kids is now providing a weekly activity at Peter Mac. Koala Kids volunteers Davina Chisik and Emma Barham will facilitate the Wednesday session at the paediatric radiotherapy service clinic with music therapist Steph.

“It will be wonderful for the clinic to have a Koala Kids volunteer present each week. Our music therapist Steph feels very strongly that Koala Kids input supports her music program and will be greatly appreciated by the children and families.” Lisa Forsberg, paediatric nurse coordinator, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre told Koala Kids.

KOALA KIDS ON THE FRONT LINE AT THE ROYAL CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL

Koala Kids volunteers visit patients and families in the Kookaburra ward and Children’s Cancer Centre at the RCH nearly every Monday morning.

Our volunteers registered on the hospital’s Visiting Volunteer Program distribute themed creativity kits filled with activities and stationery designed to distract the children and young people during treatment and long hospital stays.  The volunteers also visit children having cancer treatment outside Kookaburra when it is full and check in, as often as possible, with each of the Nurse Unit Managers to restock Koala Kids Happy Tubs, 60L orange plastic tubs filled with donated activities, books and other items for all ages including parents – more distraction to pass the time and relieve the boredom.

Huckleberry volunteering at KOALA Kids

Unlike Huckleberry ‘Huck’ Finn who lived off of what he received from others, five members of the Huckleberry Agencies team provided volunteer support for KOALA Kids recently as part of the  
One Day for Change program.  As part of a company week of volunteering, the team, led by Tom Stephenson, office manager , volunteer week coordinator and graphic arts student, enjoyed an afternoon of getting their hands dirty sorting and packing squeaky clean new consumables headed for different departments and facilities in the Children’s Cancer Centres and Peter Mac.  They also packed large tubs filled with specific craft items headed for five of the nine outreach facilities supported by KOALA Kids, for children and adolescents who are able to have their treatment and consults closer to home in country Victoria.
Last year the One Day for Change initiative saw over 7,000 employees of the Dents Aegis network across Asia Pacific leaving the office on the same day to provide 29,000 hours of volunteer work in local communities.
Paul, Phil, Nick, Tom, Anessa with KOALA Kids program director, Mandy Mandie
Paul, Phil, Nick, Tom, Anessa with KOALA Kids program director, Mandy Mandie

Before getting stuck into the store room, the Huckleberry team spent a power hour with members of the KOALA Kids social media team discussing KOALA Kids strategy and looking at all options and mediums relevant to the our demographics.  It was unanimously decided among the wider group that Facebook is the perfect vehicle through which to talk to and attract KOALA Kids followers and that the current style and timing of posts is achieving excellent results.

If you haven’t LIKED KOALA Kids on Facebook you can at www.facebook.com/KOALAKidsNFP