• Research
  • Discovery
  • Development
WIRF is one of Australia's leading organisations that is dedicated to improving the health of women and infants.

Volunteers Program

  • WIRF's selfless volunteers work to support the Foundation, the hospital and its patients and staff.

    The Foundation is immensely proud of all its volunteers. Their hard work and commitment directly benefits women and babies in WA through our research and by supporting patients and visitors to King Edward Memorial Hospital.

    Many of our volunteers work in the hospital’s café/gift shop and op shop, and provide social work support. Some coordinate Baby Bundles for the Social Work Department to provide to families in need, and memory boxes for the hospital’s Perinatal Loss Service.

    We also have more than 300 community knitters and sewers who make specialised garments for use in the hospital’s special care nursery. There are a number of different opportunities available depending on your interests, skills and level of experience.

    Areas where volunteers give support:
    • The Café/Gift Shop
    • The Opportunity Shop
    • Support to the Social Work Department and Perinatal Loss Service
    • Event/Marketing/WIRF Administration and Assistance
    • Knitting / sewing clothes for preterm babies and thePerinatal Loss Unit

    Becoming a volunteer at WIRF provides you with:
    • A sense of involvement
    • Opportunities for friendship and social contact
    • A way of giving back to the community
    • An interesting and dynamic workplace
    • A chance to use existing skills and develop new ones

    If you’d like to be a part of our friendly Volunteer team, please contact our Volunteer Manager.
  • I feel very fortunate to have spent 11 years as a volunteer in the Outpatients’ Oncology in the West Wing, where I have made many friends, patients and staff alike.

    It is a pleasure and a privilege to serve morning tea to the lovely patients, who show such resilience in what, at times, must be very frightening circumstances.  They are often very keen to chat about their illness, their hopes and fears.  This has certainly helped me become more aware of the emotional toll placed on them and their families, and also their great strength.

    With this in mind, it is very heartening to hear their constant praise of the wonderful staff and facilities at the hospital.  They are also very appreciative of all the volunteers who take time out of their day to care, when indeed it is very much our pleasure.

    Lo Egerton-Warburton, Outpatients’ Oncology Volunteer, West Wing

    I have been knitting and sewing for KEMH for twenty years.  Not being as mobile as I would like means I can make little garments from home and it has given me enormous pleasure. 

    Having previously worked in the Social Work Department I know that all donations from the volunteers will be used to help the mothers and babies. Apart from clothing there is a need for wraps, pillows, cot bags and other items.  As a volunteer you are helping not only the mothers and their babies but helping to ensure  the continuity of the quality of care that the hospital is well known for. I think the benefits from volunteering are huge and I thoroughly recommend it.

    Ros Bishop, Social Work Department Volunteer of 20 years and currently an External Knitter and Sewer

    Volunteering is not about “doing good things” but about doing things you enjoy. Working here at the hospital provides an opportunity to meet people, socialise and see another side of life. If you live alone as I do, it is interesting to have another pursuit which may help others instead of vegetating at home.

    Raie Bradshaw
  • We are extremely grateful to our volunteer knitters and sewers, living all over WA for the time and effort taken to make baby clothing and blankets.

    If you would like to volunteer your time to knit or sew for the babies in the King Edward Memorial Hospital special care nurseries and for our Baby Bundles program please follow the below patterns. These patterns have been approved by our healthcare specialists at KEMH.

    Unfortunately, we cannot use garments made from unapproved patterns in our special care nurseries but are happy to take them in our hospital shops to raise funds for research.

    Knitting Patterns

    Sewing Patterns
After almost four decades of coordinating our dedicated team of knitters and sewers, Margaret Lay called it quits after a stellar 38 years of volunteering in September 2016.

During her time Margaret has helped thousands of parents and babies; providing support to families following the loss of a baby, as well as clothes, blankets and essentials to disadvantaged women and newborns.

View Margaret's story on Ten Eyewitness News here.

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Contact details

Women and Infants Research Foundation
Carson House, King Edward Memorial Hospital
374 Bagot Road, Subiaco, WA 6008

Telephone: 08 6458 1437
Fax: 08 6458 1642
Email: info@wirf.com.au

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