Welcome to Jenny, the new Group Support Leader for the Nambucca Valley Parkinson’s Support Group

Vince Carroll, John Mills and Jenny Zirkler. Photo: Jenny Zirkler.

 

JOHN Mills, the longstanding Chairman and Support Group Leader of the Nambucca Valley Parkinson’s Support group (NVPSG), has handed over the reins to new Support Group Leader Jenny Zirkler.

Mr Mills will still be assisting the group in a lesser capacity and still has a vision for the group.

“I would like to see a greater understanding in the community as to what the Parkinson’s Support Group offers.”

Ms Zirkler, when talking about Mr Mills’ role in the Support Group, said, “John has been the heart and soul of the group.

“He has kept it going.

“John has been very supportive of everyone, and makes sure that they have all the information that they need.

“It has been a very good group over the years, and has concentrated on getting the information out to people about Parkinson’s.”

A long-time resident of the Valley, Ms Zirkler started working at Macksville Hospital full-time in 1981, and her career has seen her employed as the Executive Officer and Director of Nursing at Macksville.

She has recently retired from her position as Executive Manager of the NVC Group.

Her time working with the NVC saw her spending time with residents who have Parkinson’s.

When Ms Zirkler heard that there was a position to fill at NVPSG she offered to take on the role.

“I’ve been very involved in the community for a long time.

“Once I retired I didn’t want to sit down and do nothing.

“So I thought I would help with the group.

“I see this as a way of giving back to the community.”

Vince Carroll, a Parkinson’s nurse from Coffs Harbour also attends group meetings.

Mr Mills said, “We are most fortunate in having a dedicated Parkinson’s trained nurse in Vince Carroll with the full time job in communicating and assisting PD sufferers.

“Vince covers the Coffs, Bellingen and Nambucca shire areas visiting hospitals, nursing homes, retirement villages and private homes and is held in very high esteem.”

Mr Carroll’s position is part funded by NSW Health, and the rest by fundraising.

Ms Zirker encouraged anyone who would like to assist, whether that be through monetary donations or volunteering time, to please get in contact.

“Help is always needed.

“Volunteers could help members that attend who need help with exercise, and if we do fundraising, help with that would be much appreciated.”

All are welcome to attend, Ms Zirkler said, “Even if you are just interested in learning more about Parkinson’s and do not have Parkinson’s, you are welcome to come along.”

Nambucca Valley Parkinson’s Support group meets on the second Tuesday of each month at 10am at Blue Gum Cafe at Lakeside Gardens, Short Street, Macksville.

To attend the meetings please be advised that you need to be fully vaccinated, and meetings are held in a COVID-Safe way.

Any queries please contact Jenny Zirkler at [email protected] or John Mills on 0427682041.

 

By Rachel MCGREGOR-ALLEN

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