Palliative Care Queensland

Shining Star Award 2023 Winner, PCQ Policy and Operations Support – Mark Gibson

PCQ’s Volunteer Village Shining Star Awards 2023

In celebration of National Volunteer Week, Palliative Care Queensland Inc. will be announcing the 7 winners of the PCQ Volunteer Village Shining Star Awards for 2023.
This award is to celebrate and showcase our volunteers, # TheChangeMakers, who contribute the most hours volunteering for PCQ in different areas of our PCQ Volunteer Village program.
We appreciate all the generous efforts of our volunteers who positively impact Queenslanders experiencing serious illness, dying, death and grief.
Each day this week, we will be announcing the winners for each of the categories below
• PCQ Policy and Operations Support
• AWQld Fundraising Support
• AWQld Wish Fulfilment Support
• AWQld All Rounder Support
Today, Tuesday 16th May,  we would like to congratulate Mark Gibson for volunteering with PCQ Policy and Operations Support.

Why did you decide to become a volunteer for PCQ?

Having journeyed with friends and family diagnosed with end-stage conditions, it was clear that more awareness and funding was required to support families on their end-of-life journey.

For some time, there has been public comment about reduced resources for palliative services. With the introduction of assisted dying, there were new concerns about further pressures on funding for standard palliative care services.

Rather than complain about the lack of funding, I thought taking action and offering my services directly was better. The opportunity to look at funding models and community infrastructure with new financing initiatives presented a worthwhile challenge.

What does Palliative Care mean to you?

Palliative care is not the ‘end stage’ care we sometimes consider it to be. It is much more.

I saw the palliative care TV advertisement that advocated “it is more than you think”, and it struck a chord with me.

When we enter the last period of our life (in sports parlance, the fourth quarter), we will all come to know our means of death. Without getting too dark, we might want to think about how we might approach a difficult diagnosis with a subsequent lifestyle change and how we interact and rely on family and friends as we approach the difficult end stages. There are many aspects of facing life’s reality that we need to consider and seek appropriate support.

Palliative care for me is being able to go on this journey and to adapt and choose options needed to manage our final stage in a more supported and meaningful way.

Being aware and engaging with the changed lifestyle that a serious diagnosis brings is a very important set of decisions and choices. Being informed and prepared might help us, and others.

My sense is that a positive palliative care pathway aims to support the individuals, and the family’s needs, to live the best life in the time available. While assisted dying might be appropriate in specific situations, many options are possible with a robust palliative care infrastructure and an informed community.

Skip to content