Tuesday, September 21, 2021
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Ambulance Wish Foundation: Fulfilling That One Last Wish


“I’ve learned that people who are going to die have little wishes,” – Kees Veldboer, Stichting Ambulance Wens (Ambulance Wish Foundation)

Lying on the hospital bed as one counts every second before they die, can be very painful for both the patient and their kin. There are always moments when one considers dying than dying piece by piece because of their illness. In such a situation, the only probable hope or rather an angel in disguise is the Stichting Ambulance Wens (Ambulance Wish Foundation) that aims to fulfil the last wish of a terminally ill patient.

Yes, It Is An Ambulance. No, It Does Not Take You To The Hospital.

Back in 2006, Kees Veldboer was shifting a patient from one hospital to another. Due to some reason, there was a delay in shifting and it was then that Kees asked the patient if he’d like to go elsewhere since he refused to get back in the hospital bed.

Kees still remembers the tears of joy from the patient’s eye when he had made arrangements for a last sail around the Rotterdam harbour.

Kees Veldboer with a patient at Rotterdam harbour
The first wish fulfilled by Kees Veldboer at Rotterdam harbour

This is exactly what Kees Veldboer has continued to do for almost a decade now. The Ambulance Wish Foundation is a charitable organisation and has managed to fulfil 8000+ wishes with an army of 230 volunteers.

Isn’t The Life Of The Patient Made More Vulnerable?

Ambulance Wish Foundation takes good care of that. Their ambulances are specially designed and fully equipped to provide any kind of emergency assistance. There is always a well-trained nurse onboard, and the drivers too are trained well to handle any kind of an emergency.

There are many organisations that work towards fulfilling the last wish, but Ambulance Wish Foundation guarantees them medical security and goes the distance (quite literally) for its patients. There have been incidents where the service has travelled over 4500km to help a patient meet her family.

final look at favourite painting
Patient’s wish to have a final look at her favourite Rembrandt painting at Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum

Ambulance Wish Foundation proves that it just takes a small gesture to make someone happy, and what could be more satisfying than giving someone moments of joy before their inevitable death. The foundation is currently active in Netherlands and plans to expand to countries like Belgium, Germany, Sweden and Israel.

It is saddening when we try to draw a parallel between Netherlands and India where one side is striving at fulfilling wishes while the other is struggling to provide good healthcare facilities. India is still at a stage where healthcare laws are being amended, and blame it on the population or economic differences, but in India only money can guarantee good service and a probable peaceful death.

We have a long way to go but until then kudos to Ambulance Wish Foundation for their brilliant effort and helping in restoring faith in humanity.


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