Ambulance volunteering is fast becoming a rite of passage for University of Southern Queensland (USQ) nursing students, and St John Ambulance thinks it is a win-win for both the students and St John.
“The benefits of having nursing students is that they have the academic knowledge and volunteering gives them the real life practical setting in which to apply it. This is a win-win for us all,” a St John Ambulance spokesperson said.
Geraldton Universities Centre (GUC) based nursing student Elise Satie began volunteering with St John Ambulance in 2015 before starting her nursing studies.
“Volunteering has given me more skills, opportunities and overall personal satisfaction than I could have ever envisaged. It is a privilege to be in a position to care for others on what is likely to be one of the worst or scariest days of their life,” Ms Satie said.
“The team of career paramedics, volunteers and other support staff are always willing to help you learn, improve on your skills and give feedback, which is invaluable as a student working towards a role of responsibility and autonomy. I love what I do, and that’s why I continue to do it.”
GUC Nursing Coordinator Joanna Krummenacher said that volunteering is an important way for nursing students to learn about caring.
“Ambulance volunteering in particular is a fabulous way to reinforce nursing skills being taught such as critical thinking and accurate decision making.
“Our GUC based registered nursing students gain confidence in developing accurate communication skills both with ambulance team members, other health professionals and most importantly the general public.”
St John has a blended model of staffing between professional paramedics and volunteers and is always recruiting for more volunteers.
“In regional areas particularly, St John relies on volunteers, and without them, we would struggle to provide the service we do.”
If you would like to volunteer you can contact St John Ambulance Geraldton on 0438102906 or visit https://changelives.stjohnambulance.com.au/changelives