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A Lifetime of Service: Don and Heather McGregor

Don and Heather have served BaptistCare faithfully and with all their hearts for over 40 years.

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One of BaptistCare’s longest serving volunteer couples, Don and Heather McGregor, reached a momentous milestone in 2020, clocking up 40 years of volunteer service together at BaptistCare Aminya Centre.

Heather, the daughter of Ron Robertson, the first secretary of the Baptist Homes Trust, has unsurprisingly grown up with BaptistCare since she was a child.

As a young girl, Heather admired the original BaptistCare volunteers – the Ladies Auxiliary - and was determined to join them when she was older. When Aminya Centre opened in 1980, the Ladies Auxiliary opened a branch in The Hills area, and Heather was one of the first to join the team.

Heather did all sorts of jobs in the Auxiliary, including driving residents to the shops once a week, visiting people on their birthdays, putting on Christmas concerts and running the refreshment stall at the annual fete. After their branch of the Auxiliary disbanded in 2013, Heather continued to support Don in his work.

After he met and married Heather, Don started his volunteering with Sercom, BaptistCare’s equivalent of the Ladies Auxiliary. He has warm memories of putting together Christmas hampers and of working bees with the Sercom men. But his greatest commitment has been hosting a church service at Aminya Centre for over 40 years.

“The Aminya role was almost an accident,” recalls Don.

“Alma O’Rourke, the first Matron at Aminya, called and asked for a Minister for an Easter Service. I said I didn’t think she’d find anyone on such short notice, so I went up for one week. And one of the ladies asked me if I’d come back again. And that’s how I started running church services at Aminya.”

Down the track, Don and Heather, along with other volunteers, assisted in running the small coffee shop at Aminya Centre. They served together in the coffee shop for many years, and they loved it. One fond memory saw Heather and Don serve a husband and wife on their Golden Anniversary.

“The husband couldn’t go out because he was in a wheelchair, and the coffee shop was just there on the spot, so they could have lunch together. And of course, we didn’t give them the bill!”

When asked why they have served with BaptistCare for so many years, both Don and Heather are equally honest and humble.

“It’s not all giving; there’s a lot of receiving. You get more out of volunteering than what you put in. Of course, that’s not why you do it; it’s just a by-product. It’s a good Christian service,” the couple said.

“It’s a grand opportunity to present the gospel, and the people need it. They look after me very well; they’re so encouraging,” said Don.

From everyone at BaptistCare, thank you Don and Heather, for your years of volunteering. We are deeply appreciative of your longstanding commitment. You have indeed served faithfully and with all your heart, and we are indebted to you for it.