Meet The Volunteers Who Have Been With Camp Quality For Over 35 Years
We couldn’t do what we do without our incredible volunteers. Their commitment is truly inspirational - especially these amazing individuals who have been a part of our family for over 35 years!
Nickname(s): Mans, Mandie Moo, Bindie, M
Volunteer Roles: Companion, Camp Leader, Rover, LCM, VCC
Number of years volunteering with Camp Quality: 36
Position at Camp Quality: Family Program Coordinator (FPC)
What I do at Camp Quality: Its a great mix of meeting the families when they first get diagnosed in hospital and introducing them to the CQ puppets and Camp Quality, to organising FuN & memorable day events, family and kids camps to allow the families to move through their cancer experience, building memories, growing networks of other families on a like experience and just being able to spend time as a family or grow in confidence as a child at our events.
If I could go anywhere for a holiday, I would travel to: Scotland
My earliest memory as a Camp Quality volunteer: Meeting my camper for the first time at the us and spending time getting to know them all the way to camp and home. The kids and companions in our cabin, its amazing how well you got to know each other in the week long camps.
Why I chose to volunteer with Camp Quality: My dad was an inspiration growing up, he got such a kick out of helping people, I used to watch his face while he jumped in and assisted wherever he could - priceless!!! Vera, CQ founder, I knew her from the age of 12. When she was starting CQ, it wasn't a trusted charity yet, so Vera's enthusiasm was pretty amazing, and I was hooked after the first camp.
What keeps me coming back/what I get most out of volunteering for Camp Quality: Everything, the wonderful kids, the beautiful families, the big hearted vollies, the laughs, the outfits - I love a good theme, people that are a lovely type of crazy that make you laugh and that selfless / selfish thing, you get more out of this than you ever put in.
My hidden talent or party trick is: Don't really have any, but could eat more chocolate than most people - a lil obsessed!
My greatest achievement to date is: Other than a lot of what most peeps say, kids etc, I would say trying not to say how long I've been a vollie as people try to guess how OLDDDD I am - lol
My most embarrassing moment was when: One of them would be locking my keys in my car, TWICE, the week before I got married. Never done it before or since, but that week what an egghead and some people just love to remind you.......
If I could only eat one meal for the rest of my life, it would be: Cooked sushi
Where do you see Camp Quality in 35 years time: Hopefully not needed - I would love it if there was more cures found. If it was here, the week long camps we used to hold in the early years were amazing, exhausting but amazing. But to be totally honest, they are all awesome for different reasons, even a couple of weeks ago, our family camp had torrential rain and flash flooding, but the vollies helped make lemonade out of lemons!!! Puddle dancing too much fun.
Nickname(s): Sr Margie!
Volunteer Roles: Medical team.
Number of years volunteering with Camp Quality: 35years
What I do in everyday life: I work causally, care for my family and I love to travel!
My earliest memory as a Camp Quality volunteer: When I started with Camp Q there were two Children’s Hospitals. Each hospital would send an oncology nurse and they would take turns in sending a Dr. When this staffing gift was stopped, I continued in my role as a volunteer. There was no risk management, policy and procedures! Simply sheer fun! We certainly partook of some pretty wild activities!
During the period when I had my twin boys, I helped with the Volunteer Liaising position.
Why I chose to volunteer with Camp Quality: I was the Clinical nurse in Oncology at Mater Children’s Hospital. The hospital would pay me to go to camp back then! I got hooked very quickly!
What keeps me coming back/what I get most out of volunteering for Camp Quality: The innocent zest for living that the children possess! The support offered to families can be life changing for them. I have made life long friends! The laughter!
My hidden talent or party trick is: I have no talents!!
My greatest achievement to date is: My twin boys!
My most embarrassing moment was when: If I wasn’t embarrassed at least once every camp, it wouldn’t have been a good camp!!
Where do you see Camp Quality in 35 years time: I see it continuing to thrive! The focus on the true values of Camp Quality will never change!
Name: Peter Iverson
Nickname(s): “Ivo” “Magnum” “Brockles”
Volunteer Roles: Speaking bureau, Camp Leader, Family Camp Leader, Companion, Rover, inaugural member of The Manning Valley Support Group and Patron/Life Member, Fundraiser, past Board Member.
Number of years volunteering with Camp Quality: 35 years
What I do in everyday life: Run a hobby farm, semi-retired but still working as an investigator and besides my Camp Quality involvement am in involved in several other volunteer positions in our local community.
My earliest memory as a Camp Quality volunteer: The trepidation I had as I did not intend to be a volunteer only a fund raiser, but a very persuasive lady, Vera Entwistle, talked me into my first camp. Everything is history after that.
Her catch cry was: “If you see a need, you’re elected.”
Why I chose to volunteer with Camp Quality: I heard Vera address the service clubs in Taree and at the time I was President of Taree Apex Club and I thought I could get Apex nationally to support Camp Quality. So with this in mind, Lyn & I attended the inaugural AGM of Camp Quality to get more information etc to proceed with the fundraising project. However after I spoke at the meeting the next day I was approached by Vera to be a companion to two identical twins (Shane & Brad Leggo)
What keeps me coming back/what I get most out of volunteering for Camp Quality: Lyn & I have six children and nine grandchildren and all are healthy, plus we have been Foster Carers. We cannot imagine what our kids parents go through and the little amount of time we can give them is so very important and special and I feel that I get much more out than what I put in. It is a very great privilege and honor to be trusted by these parents to look after their children.
My hidden talent or party trick is: Not sure, but I think having a sick sense of humor stands me in good stead.
My greatest achievement to date is: Lyn & I being nominated and awarded our OAM’s in 2016, mainly for our work with Camp Quality.
My most embarrassing moment was when: On the first Family Camp, in unknown territory, a young boy had a choice to shoot his arrow at the target or a duck on the pond! After he missed the duck his father threw his work boot at him hitting him in the back of the head. This child had just undergone surgery for a brain tumor. No one knew what to do but Vera and Brian, who were present, had said earlier go with the families as this was their lives and they would know what to do. This is how it happened and after this incident we have been friends with this family right up to this day.
Where do you see Camp Quality in 35 years time: At my age I won’t be around!! But like Lyn, it would be great to think a cure for cancer would be found and there would no longer be a need for a charity like ours.
Name: Marilyn (Lyn) Iverson
Volunteer Roles: Speakers Role, Camp Leader, Family Camp Leader, Companion, Rover, Fund Raiser, founding member and past president, current vice president and patron/life member of Manning Valley Support Group
Number of years volunteering with Camp Quality: 35 years this year.
What I do in everyday life: Besides my Camp Quality involvement, I love my other various volunteering roles which involve three to four days per week. In my spare time I look after our home and farm.
My earliest memory as a Camp Quality volunteer: Watching all the smiling faces not only on the kids faces but all the volunteers and supporters. Having very special moments with the parents on family Camps.
Why I chose to volunteer with Camp Quality: I attended the inaugural AGM of Camp Quality with my husband and heard an amazing lady, Vera Entwistle, talk about her hopes and dreams for this fledgling charity.
What keeps me coming back/what I get most out of volunteering for Camp Quality: The amazing parents who trust us and let us care for their children and the smiles and laughter of the children and companions. Every camp brings a new experience and lots of great memories.
My hidden talent or party trick is: Just to be on camp and do the little things, like washing, change a soiled bed, or whatever needs to be done to make everything run smoothly.
My greatest achievement to date is: That one of our families nominated my husband and I for an OAM which we were awarded in 2016, mainly for our work with Camp Quality.
My most embarrassing moment was when: Can’t think of one!!
Where do you see Camp Quality in 35 years time: I would hope we will be out of business as they find a cure for cancer!!