It was a simple gesture, offering a patient her jacket, but for Westfield Matildas and Sydney FC star Leena Khamis it was a touching moment during a community visit with teammate Nicola Bolger to Royal Rehab College, Ryde.
Khamis and Bolger visited patients at the College before taking part in a game of wheelchair tennis and handcycling, but it was Khamis’ offering of her jacket to a patient at the College, Pat, that took the limelight.
“It was a great experience [visiting Royal Rehab College],” Khamis said.
“It’s definitely something I’ve never been to before and it was a good insight of what actually happens in these rehab centres.
“It was touching, just to see the patients and listen to their stories and see what they’ve been through and it just makes you appreciate things a lot more.
“She [Pat] initially liked my jacket and said she loved the colour of the jacket and it was the instinct so I took it off and gave it to her,” Khamis continued.
“It’s just a jacket at the end of the day but for her it meant a lot and I’m glad she appreciated it. I’m sure she’ll make good use of it and I was more than happy to give it to her.”
Director of Royal Rehab College at Ryde, Stuart Miller, praised the girls for their visit and said that Pat receiving Leena’s jacket shocked the staff and patients at the College.
“This type of visit inspires our clients, it gives them a feel good thing and also the staff really enjoyed it as well,” he said.
“It brought tears to the hardest people standing around at the time.
“Everyone was really taken aback, it was the first time any sporting person had come along and done that. Nobody was asking her to do that, she just saw someone was cold and said ‘here, have my jacket’.”
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