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Mater celebrates its people

Almost 400 of Mater’s Exceptional People were recognised at the annual Mater Long Service Awards ceremony held on Thursday 3 September 2009.

Mater’s Director of Mission Support Services, Peter Martin, who was recognised for 10 years of service, said there was “something special” about Mater.

“Mater draws people to it ... and I think many people thrive as a part of this wonderful big family,” Mr Martin said.

The following individuals represent just a few of Mater’s many shining stars.

Nita Buckingham—40 years
For 40 “fulfilling” years Nita Buckingham has worked in the Biochemistry Department at Mater Laboratory Service.

Her role has expanded through the decades from a laboratory cadet to her latest role as area co-ordinator of the Mater Biochemistry Special Investigations section.

“I have witnessed some major changes. Biochemistry has offered a challenge with its ever-changing environment and new testing to assist in the monitoring and diagnosis of disease states,” she said.

For 40 fulfilling years Nita Buckingham has worked in the Biochemistry Department at Mater Laboratory Service

For 40 “fulfilling” years Nita Buckingham has worked in the Biochemistry Department at Mater Laboratory Service.

Dr Paul Devenish-Meares—30 years
Being involved in the planning and development of the new Mater Mothers’ Hospitals has been a highlight for Chief Medical Information Officer/Staff Specialist Obstetrics Dr Paul Devenish-Meares.

“It was an interesting and challenging project to be a part of,” Dr Devenish-Meares said.

“A bit like planning the design of a new house, except that instead of consulting with one wife over the blueprint it was more like dealing with a hundred wives!” he joked.

Dr Devenish-Meares said working in the new, state-of-the-art hospital after being so closely involved in its development was very satisfying.

Today’s Mater is a different health care facility to the one it was when Dr Devenish-Meares arrived at Mater as a resident in the 1970s.

“Back then we worked in the open-plan nightingale wards,” he said.

“It was a very friendly hospital atmosphere though and there was a good sense of camaraderie among the whole staff. That was one of the reasons I was keen to come back to Mater after training overseas for two years.”

Chief Medical Information Officer/Staff Specialist Obstetrics Dr Paul Devenish-Meares

Chief Medical Information Officer/Staff Specialist Obstetrics Dr Paul Devenish-Meares.

Gwen Grant – 15 years
As one of Mater Health Services’ longest serving volunteers, Gwen Grant still feels a sense of privilege every time she enters a ward on one of her shifts.

“I am giving something by coming in as a volunteer to help where I can, but mostly what I feel is privileged to be here ... privileged to be allowed to be part of this wonderful place where such special work happens,” Ms Grant said.

Having volunteered in different capacities for various causes, Ms Grant rang Mater on a whim to see if there was a volunteer program she could donate her time to.

She soon found herself at Mater Children’s Hospital, providing support to waiting families while operations took place.

Over the years she has worked in a number of areas at Mater Children’s Hospital, Mater Mothers’ Hospitals, and Mater Private Hospital Brisbane.

“Mater shows every day that volunteers fulfilling a range of roles can help make a real difference to people in hospital,” she said.

Gwen Grant still feels a sense of privilege every time she enters a ward on one of her shifts

Gwen Grant still feels a sense of privilege every time she enters a ward on one of her shifts.

Peter Martin – 10 years
For a decade Peter Martin has managed pastoral care at Mater—an integral department which is responsible for providing services that help patients and their families during often difficult times.

“There is increasing recognition of the need for hospitals to deliver ‘holistic’ care,” Mr Martin said.

“So as well as looking after the physical, social and psychological care, health care providers need also to focus on spiritual care, which can mean many different things.”

“I believe Mater has always been very careful to give spiritual care the emphasis it deserves and it has been wonderful for me to be involved in this,” he said.

“Our role is simply to help people find whatever they are looking for in a spiritual sense.”

For a decade Peter Martin has managed pastoral care at Mater—an integral department

For a decade Peter Martin has managed pastoral care at Mater—an integral department.

 

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