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Midwife farewells 30-year nursing career

Benalla Health midwifery manager Marg Daw has brought her nursing career to an end.

MONIQUE FREER June 19, 2014 3:37am

Marg Daw with midwifery colleagues Helen Ellis, Gretchen Nadenbousch, Janine Keast, maternal and child health nurse Glenys Graham and midwife Judy Crawford.

Thirty years after setting foot in Benalla Health, Marg Daw has farewelled a career in nursing.

The midwifery manager last week moved on from her long career in the field, and said she would cherish having made a positive impact on people’s lives.

‘‘Ultimately the reward of the job is making a difference in someone’s life — and that’s what sits with me,’’ Ms Daw said.

‘‘I love all aspects of nursing because to me if you make a difference in people’s lives, that’s what matters.’’

Ms Daw came to Benalla in 1984 to be married after working at the Royal Melbourne Hospital since her graduation from Lincoln Institute — now La Trobe University — in 1980.

‘‘I was the fifth group in Victoria to be trained at the college, in a group of about 19 people,’’ she said.

She began at Benalla Health as a division one nurse in the medical ward, before moving into surgery and palliative care.

‘‘She was one of the ones who started palliative care and one of the first nurse educators in Victoria, and the first in Benalla,’’ Benalla Health midwife and colleague Helen Ellis said.

Among her many accolades, Ms Daw was the associate director of nursing, took on a role as a nurse educator and worked alongside renowned surgeon Michael Long.

‘‘He used to fly up from Melbourne and it was big surgery that we did,’’ Ms Daw said.

‘‘We used to work well together and I learned a lot from him.’’

In 2000 she was given the opportunity to fulfil a lifelong ambition of becoming a midwife, and relocated her family to Wodonga to study at university.

One year later, when qualified, she returned to Benalla and began working as a midwife, eventually becoming the midwifery manager.

Ms Daw said her time at Benalla Health was made more enjoyable by the staff she worked with.

‘‘They’re a fabulous group of people that give so much of themselves. It’s always been a caring environment with lots of mutual respect,’’ she said.

‘‘Behind all that sits my family because Benalla Health has been as much a part of their lives as mine, and they’ve always been supportive of me.

‘‘It’s more than a job, it’s been my life.’’

Ms Ellis said her colleague would be greatly missed at the hospital.

‘‘We’ll miss her leadership, friendship and endless support; her enthusiasm for patients, staff and students,’’ Ms Ellis said.

‘‘She was always inspiring and she’s led us through good times and hard times.’’

An afternoon tea and celebratory dinner with family, friends and colleagues was held last week to mark the occasion.

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