Alice Mack's Story
When I was young, I was always ill. As a child I spent months in Beamount Hospital, missed a lot of school. I didn’t even do a primary certificate. Not having been educated, I always felt a bit shy. But somehow, 16 years ago,I decided to volunteer at Our Lady’s Hospice & Care Services in Harold’s Cross. I’m not sure why I did – but it was one of the best decisions of my life.
I met such lovely people and started to come out of myself. We’d sit with the patients, help the fundraising team with lots of different jobs and preparing for events. After work, the six of us volunteers would go down to the canteen and some days we’d stay for hours. It was so enriching and enjoyable. We worked on Tuesdays, and everyone called us “the Tuesday girls.”
I have such great memories of the hospice. The staff are absolutely brilliant. There’s such a feeling of warmth and family. People look after each other, can’t do enough for each other. It’s always been like that.
My friend was in hospice . Her husband rang me, just wanting to talk about how wonderful the Hospice had been for her. She was so well cared for in her final days, and that meant so much to him. He said to me, “It’s just unbelievable, Alice.”
All these years working here, I never thought I’d see the day that I became a patient. The doctors found pancreatic cancer and spots on my lungs. It’s scary, the unknown. But I also have seen what extraordinary care is offered here, which gives me so much comfort.
I’d like money to go toward the hospice. It’s been my home from home for 16 years and it’s a place of love. Anyone who’s been inside just knows it. I feel it’s not much but it’s what I wanted to do and we were always so welcome and appreciated.
If you can make sure people keep feeling that peace and care, after I’m gone, it will be the most wonderful gift.