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HCA Day Hospices go shopping!
05 March 2015

A huge outing for both our day hospices was sponsored by Alice Foo and Julie Chan on 3 February 2015 at Suntec City.

By 11 am, more than 50 volunteers had begun to mill around Tower Four of Suntec City, waiting patiently for the vans that had been deployed across the island to pick up our patients.

The volunteers were matched into one of the five groups that had been formed and immediately got to work pushing our patients’ wheelchairs to the meeting point.

“We are very grateful for the volunteers who came to help us,” said Nancy Soon, Day Hospice Supervisor at the HCA Day Hospice Centre. “Today we have our older and experienced volunteers who purposely made time to help us, and also very new volunteers who are joining us for  the first time!”

While we didn’t stop for beer along the way despite the Happy Hour, our patients, staff, and volunteers were definitely happy to be out and about. Here’s Day Hospice Assistant Ah Fu and Mr Khaled from the Kang Le Day Care Centre.

The first item on the day’s programme was lunch at Paradise Inn – which was also sponsored by Alice and Julie. Thank you!

First, we had to make our way there. Giant was kind enough to allow us to cut through their premises for the fastest route from the lifts at Tower Four. Additionally, Suntec City deployed security and safety staff who guided our crowd and assisted at the travellators.

Our volunteers were also vital in getting our patients safely from the lobby to the restaurant. Mdm Foo from the Kang Le Day Care Centre showed her absolute trust in the volunteers getting her down the travelator.

Our patients found their seats with the help of our staff and volunteers. As our patients waited for the meals, our staff bought Halal meals for our Muslim patients.

We occupied practically half the restaurant, and drew many stares for the huge number of wheelchairs that we’d folded and parked neatly outside.

Here’s Day Hospice Assistant Rukmi and  Mr Sim taking the opportunity to get a photo together…

…while others settled in at the restaurant.

It was an enjoyable meal with good company and good conversation – here’s Day Hospice Assistant  Coco chatting with Mdm Foo.

After everyone had eaten, we set off for the Giant Hypermarket for the shopping portion of our outing. Each of the patients had been given $30 to spend on anything they wanted – again, this was sponsored by Alice and Julie.

Alice said, “We’re very happy to be able to provide an opportunity for patients from HCA’s Day Hospice Centres to spend time interacting and having fun with others outside of their homes. It’s great to see so many smiling and joyful faces and hope this is a memorable experience for all.”

We were pleased to have Alice with us that day – here she is with Mr Ong.

Some, like Mdm Daniar and Catherine, knew what they wanted…

…while others took a little longer finding what they were looking for.

I asked Mdm Lee, one of our HCA Day Hospice Centre patients, what she planned to do with her goodies.

“The keropok is for my grandchildren when they come visit during Chinese New Year,” she shared, attempting to press one of the packets of the prawn crackers on me to share with my colleagues.

Giant was extremely supportive throughout our visit, and even prepared goody bags for each of our patients.

After a long but enjoyable day with plenty of food and retail therapy, our patients were ready to make their way to the vans for the ride home.

HCA Hospice Care would like to thank Alice and Julie for their generous sponsorship and all the volunteers present that day for making the outing possible. We would also like to thank Giant for the goody bags, as well as Suntec City for helping us keep our patients safe that day.

There are so many different ways our volunteers and sponsors can help in adding the life to the days of our patients! Let us know at communications@hcahospicecare.org.sg if you would like to join our dedicated team of volunteers, or organise an outing like this one. Find out more about volunteering here.