Heart Of The Haven: Reg Wilkinson

Reg Wilkinson.

WHEN adversity strikes, there are two choices, to either grow from it… or not.

Having a heart attack before the age of 40, along with a triple bypass for coronary disease, Reg Wilkinson took the first choice, to grow from his challenges.

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And what better way than to help others who experience the same kind of problem?

For over seventeen years Reg has participated in what was known as Heart Support, and more recently Heart Health NSW, a not-for-profit organisation providing active support to those who experience heart-related adversity.

Reg, along with other volunteers in the area, provide hospital visits to those who are in the acute phase post cardiac treatment, as many as two to three times per week.

A rostered volunteer attends the Cardiac Rehabilitation unit once a week.

Heart Health NSW also provides a carers group.

“Carers often think they have a unique situation,” said Reg.

“Once you get them in a group, they find that it’s not unique, which can be so reassuring.”

Why did Reg become a volunteer?

“Having had a heart attack before I was 40 and when I had the triple bypass, I’m very grateful.

“Grateful for life, for recovery, and the program provided at Port Base Hospital.

“I wanted to give something back to other people who are going through a similar process,” said Reg.

Nowadays you will find Reg organising walks for those who have suffered cardiac issues and their carers in Port Macquarie, Laurieton, Wauchope, and Gladstone near Kempsey.

Reg has an AED and First Aid kit in his car for easy access if needed by any of the walking groups.

If Reg had one wish for the Camden Haven community, what would it be?

“To raise the awareness of the benefits for long term support for anyone who has experienced cardiac issues.”

The Camden Haven group walks each Monday, leaving at 9am behind the Laurieton United Services Club.

Reg invites the community to get involved, noting the groups are for everyone, of all ages.

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