Blue Ribbon honours for Rudi
Barwon Health’s StaffCare Manager Dr Rudi Gasser has been awarded the Geelong Kokoda Youth Program’s Blue Ribbon Community Award, for his medical work with the youth program.
Run by Victoria Police, the Geelong Kokoda Youth Program has been operating for the past five years and gives at-risk teens the opportunity to share a life-changing experience through positive interaction with role models in the community.
Each year, 14 youths from local schools are selected to take part in the 10 month program. So far 61 young people have completed the program, with a 100% success rate, which means they have gone on to return to school, gain employment, further higher education or alternative education settings.
Rudi’s involvement in the program is to provide comprehensive travel health support, starting with health checks to determine medical fitness to undertake the strenuous trek. Barwon Health, through StaffCare, provides all the travel health vaccinations, malaria tablets, emergency drugs, medications for common ailments, first aid equipment, dressings and bandaging materials. Rudi also provides medical advice for any problems interfering with the preparation for the big trip.
“Rudi has gone far beyond what most people would consider the role of a doctor does,” said Leading Snr Constable Andy Brittain, a Youth Resource Officer at Geelong Police Station.
“He has taken a very active and genuine interest in the at-risk young people, even being able to recall their name when spoken about.
“On our very initial program, I remember Rudi ringing my mobile very early on a Saturday morning when we were transiting through Cairns Airport on the way to Papua New Guinea. He was doing a welfare check to make sure everyone was okay and that we had taken our malaria tablet as was pre-determined prior to our departure from Geelong.”
“His sincerity as a person is very humbling and very noteworthy to Barwon Health who can trust that he is representing the organisation to the highest standard,” L/S/C Brittain added.
Perry Muncaster, Chief of Workforce and Culture at Barwon Health, said Rudi embodies the Barwon Health values.
“Rudi regularly goes above and beyond in everything he does and this award is fitting recognition for him,” Perry said.
The award was presented at the annual Geelong Kokoda Youth Program breakfast today.
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Pictured above: Dr Rudi Gasser receives his award from L/S/C Andy Brittain.
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