Girls’ Academy students give hospital patients reason to smile| Photos

Patients at the Dubbo Hospital oncology and diabetes units were given a reason to smile on Thursday.

In honour of International Women’s Day, students from the Dubbo College South Campus Girl’s Academy were giving massages and makeovers to patients.

Shirley Fryers said it had brightened her day to see the students as she walked into the unit. As well as painting her nails pink, Ms Fryers said the students had given her a massage and offered her a cup of tea or coffee.

More importantly, Ms Fryers, who lives in Gilgandra, said she had been cheered up by seeing the smiles on all the faces of the young women.

“I really came with stress, I had tissues ready, but I feel so much better. Even the doctor said ‘you look a lot better’ because I normally come in quite grumpy,” she said.

I really came with stress, I had tissues ready, but I feel so much better.

Shirley Fryers

“I came here to the diabetes unit and have had great results. I’m so pleased.”

Ms Fryers said she wished she was able to see the Girls’ Academy students at her next visit to the hospital.

Fourteen students from Years 9 and 10 were taken to the hospital to give hand massages, make up and manicures. The also shared a light lunch with hospital staff and the patients.

The Girls’ Academy aims to closing the gap in health education and helping Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander girls realise their potential and become the community leaders of the future.

The academy also organised special guests speakers for the students at Dubbo College South Campus.

Girls’ Academy program manager Mandy Perkins said International Women’s Day was important to the students.

Visiting and interacting with health providers would create a lifetime experience and provide valuable health education for the girls, Ms Perkins said.

“I commend both the girls and my team for their all-round professional and caring natures while representing both Dubbo South Campus and Dubbo South Girls’ Academy,” she said.

The Girls’ Academy, which works with 39 schools across Australia, has four main objectives: increasing school attendance, advancing academic and personal achievement, improving year 12 graduation rates and facilitating post-school transition planning.

International Women’s Day is celebrated every year on March 8 to celebrate the achievements of women.