A group of men and one woman wearing pink shirts.

Pink Ladies volunteers Henry Nicholson, Chris Dwyer, Edward Piccinin, Warren Pearsall, Peter Smith, Tony Wright, and Colin Booth with Port Macquarie UHA President Gabby Gregory (centre).

Men proudly wearing pink and volunteering for good health

Jun 13, 2024

It’s Men’s Health Week and the men of the Port Macquarie’s Pink Ladies say volunteering is a fantastic way to boost health and wellbeing.

The Port Macquarie branch of the United Hospital Auxiliary (UHA) has more than 20 men on their roster. Most drive the patient courtesy vehicle which helps patients get from the car park to the main entrance of Port Macquarie Base Hospital.

Others serve on the hospital floor helping staff, supporting patients and visitors, and raising funds for important medical equipment and patient comforts.

Research shows volunteering leads to social interaction, mood improvement and increases happiness. Read the evidence of health benefits of volunteering on the Volunteering Australia website.

The men of the Pink Ladies can attest to the health benefits of volunteering.

“I’ve been a volunteer at different organisations since the 1960s,” said Colin Booth.

“The Pink Ladies is the best because dealing with people while driving the pink buggy, they are so appreciative of what we do. People are so gracious. It makes you feel great.”

Chris Dwyer said he’s worn out a few pink shirts during his long service and various roles with the Pink Ladies.

“When you finish a shift, you get a real buzz,” he said.

“When we came back into the hospital after COVID-19 restrictions were lifted, all the staff commented that it was good to see us back and that made us feel valued.”

Warren Pearsall and his partner retired to Port Macquarie and said volunteering gave him a sense of purpose.

“When you’re working, you’ve got commitments. In retirement, it can feel a bit like being in limbo. We moved here and needed to meet new people and get into a good routine, so being able to volunteer means we can make new connections which is good for your mental health,” Warren said.

While bringing a smile to patients’ faces makes volunteers feel good, physically their health improves too.

“A volunteer wore a pedometer on her shoe and recorded six kilometres just doing her usual shift in the hospital,” said President Gabby Gregory.

If you’re interested in volunteering with the Pink Ladies in Port Macquarie or finding out more about volunteer opportunities with health services in your town, email: sharon.fuller1@health.nsw.gov.au

Top of page