An absolute treat...
Working in a hospital urgent care centre during a pandemic can be tough, but a special weekly sweet treat has helped to boost morale at Portland District Health.
When the virus hit the community earlier this year, Urgent Care Centre nurse unit manager Deb Tozer asked her sister Jen Garner to bake some slices to cheer up staff.
That one-off suggestion has turned into a weekly ritual which is being appreciated as much by the staff as it is by the baker.
The regular arrival of slices is now known as `Auntie Jen’s day’.
Ms Garner said she loves to spread joy. “I love cooking and making slices. I usually give them to all the family and don’t keep much, but I could see the nurses appreciated it and looked forward to it so I decided to continue,” she said.
“I do it because I love it and if I can put a smile on someone’s face, it’s all worth it.”
Ms Garner is no stranger to PDH. A number of years ago, she had 33 stays in hospital over a three-year period to deal with serious asthma attacks, that are now under control.
She operated a food shop when she came to Portland 30 years ago and then worked in childcare, starting a creche and after school care at the YMCA.
Now retired, Ms Garner still loves cooking and baking but doesn’t necessarily follow recipes. “I kinda make them up,” she said. “I do a few from the books but I like to make them up from different things.”