“It Just Makes Me Feel Good To Give My Time” – The Divinely Simple Life Philosophy of Judy Ramsdell

BRHS Volunteer Judy Ramsdell. Photo: Jake Lynch/BRHS


You sit down with Judy Ramsdell and the joy and energy of the lady hits you square in the face.

It’s a tangible force – it radiates off her like the smell of nice shampoo. And then you’re smiling because she’s smiling, and away you go.

It is a joy that perhaps was not given to her easily. Although she is not eager to dwell on the hardships and tragedies of her past, it is clear that Judy’s empathy for people doing it a bit tough comes from her own lived experiences.

But it is also clear that she has found an anecdote to those moments of pain – an unabashed generosity and overflowing love for helping people however she can.

Judy is a BRHS volunteer for our Planned Activity Group on the Ross St. Campus, where she helps staff with activities, chats with clients, makes cups of tea as required and generally makes herself indispensable.

Not only is Judy a BRHS volunteer, she’s also a volunteer for the Salvation Army in Bairnsdale, the Paynesville Coast Guard, and at Lucknow Primary School, where she runs a vegetable garden project with students.

“I just love it,” she says (and the smile across her face tells she means it.) “It just makes me feel good to give my time. I’d give anybody anything, I really would.”

Judy has been volunteering with BRHS for 15 years – she first started donating her time and energy at Maddocks Gardens back in the early 2000s.

Originally from Melbourne, the 3rd of 13 children, Judy came to East Gippsland via the circuitous route that is life, but quickly made a lifetime’s worth of friends thanks to her generosity and a constant willingness to help.

“There are a lot of people out there with nothing,” Judy says. “If more people gave a little more of their time, the world would be a better place.”

May 20 – 26 is National Volunteers Week, and we’re taking a moment to recognise and celebrate the many volunteers that make invaluable contributions to the BRHS community.

If you’d like to know more about volunteering at BRHS, just visit www.brhs.com.au/volunteers-fundraising.