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Retiring from volunteer duties is a difficult decision for many of our volunteers. Recently, for personal reasons, Coral Reid, who has volunteered with us for 12 years, decided to retire. Anyone who came into contact with Coral at the hospital will understand how much she will be missed. Coral reflected on her time at the Eye and Ear and her passion for providing the best patient experience possible.
It all began with Coral attending her local Volunteer Expo back in 2009.

“I credit my husband with the idea, as it was him who saw the poster for the Boroondara Volunteer Expo. This is where I first heard about the Eye and Ear’s new volunteer program. I was attracted to the program because it was not an administrative role, but one where I could interact with the patients.”

Coral helped shape the concierge welcome role to what it is today and has been instrumental in recruiting, training and mentoring fellow volunteers over the years. Coral has held many and varied roles, including becoming a member of our Consumer Advisory Committee, giving her the opportunity to be a voice for the patient, one of her true passions.

“The overwhelming feeling is one of fulfilment and satisfaction in my relationship with the patients, first and foremost. That’s what we are all here for, without the patients none of us have a place,” Coral explained.

Due to COVID-19 our onsite volunteer program was put on hold, however the team stayed connected via virtual meetings and projects that could be conducted remotely.

“I feel so grateful that the Eye and Ear came into my life. It has been a privilege, a wonderful experience, beyond anything I’d thought possible after retirement, it has been most fulfilling,” Coral said.

When asked to share a final message with the community Coral said,

“The Eye and Ear is a special place. I would like the wider community to understand how important The Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital is to us all. Providing world class care, and preserving and improving the quality of so many of our lives every day.”

We thank Coral for her unwavering dedication to the Eye and Ear – she will be missed.

Coral in front of a wall holding flowers