Wandin Yallock Primary School gives back to Healesville Hospital

Christine Wittkopp, Kai, Asher, Lucius and Sue Marshall enjoyed the visit in the Healesville Hospital garden. PICTURE: RENEE WOOD

By Renee Wood

Healesville Hospital has received a donation from Wandin Yallock Primary School in honour of a school staff member and her late husband who died from Leukemia.

Sue Marshall has previously been a teacher, relief teacher and currently runs playgroup, working at the school for 37 years and her husband Jim has always been there to support in other ways.

Ms Marshall said Jim did a lot for the school including as maintenance on the oval and other ways to help out.

“He did it because he loved the school and out of the goodness of his heart,” Ms Marshall said.

Jim sadly passed away earlier this year while in end of life care at the Healesville Hospital.

The school and students wanted to do something in his honour and decided that raising a donation for the hospital was a fitting option.

The Junior School Council was given the opportunity to come up with an idea and decided to have a milkshake day, connecting back to one of Jim’s favourite treats.

Out of a school of 122 kids, they were able to raise $200 from the special day.

Teacher Alex Green said, “[because of] what he meant to sue and the school, we wanted to show our support.”

Junior School Council student members Lucius, Kai and Asher visited the Healesville Hospital to hand over the donation to Nurse Manager Christine Wittkopp in the garden used as a space of peace for patients and their families.

Lucius said it was something special to do in remembrance.

The students were able to walk through the garden and learn about what end of life care means and the importance of the space.

“[The garden] was peaceful and it had a good view,” Kai said.

“I liked the chickens,” Asher said.

Ms Marshall was grateful the donation was going towards the hospital who helped her through a difficult time.

“It’s the whole family that is supported and the dignity, the care, the respect that is given to that person in their final days is just pretty amazing and it brought me a lot of comfort personally,” she said.

“I’m very proud and his memory’s honoured in a special way. It’s just our way of giving back, my family and as well as the kids, just giving back to this wonderful community.”

Ms Wittkopp said it’s wonderful to see the students do something like this.

“It’s absolutely amazing that they that they wanted to do something in memory of Jim and to think of us for that is pretty amazing, obviously they have a great social conscience and Jim must have meant a lot to the school,” she said.

“We’re very grateful for all of our donations and what a great thing for the kids to do.”