Rob Grant with RCH Chair Rowena Coutts and CEO Bernadette McDonald
Rob Grant’s Nomination read by Michael Cheung co-nominator along with Simon Pase
When Rob Grant was on the RCH Compact advisory committee, Mike O’Brien once remarked of Rob’s contribution: “The thing about Rob is that he doesn’t say much, but he thinks A LOT.”
It speaks to the unassuming but deep impact that Rob’s work as a video producer has had on the children, the families and the workforce of The Royal Children’s Hospital.
He is curious, courageous, inclusive and especially kind.
From behind the camera Rob’s eyes and ears have seen and heard the full spectrum of experiences in a children’s hospital. It has shaped a profound empathy, which Rob expresses as only he knows how: the language of the screen.
From Rob’s exquisite screen craft come explanatory guides which build confidence in families dealing with life-changing illness. Intricate surgical procedures are documented and shared to benefit medicine globally. The simple act of workplace safety is elevated through his polished skills as if to send a message that the health of his colleagues, his RCH family, matters nearly as much as a childhood cancer.
It was Rob’s ingenuity and spirit of adventure which helped launch RCH TV in partnership with Child Life Therapy. It was no small feat to begin a live TV show, as humble as the original episodes may seem now. But it laid the foundations and the ethos for an initiative which now attracts millions of views annually on YouTube, helping to better prepare children for their hospital experience.
Rob has never shied from the difficult experiences of a children’s hospital, but sought to understand them as much as possible, and communicate them with sensitivity, authenticity and a sincere kindness to the humans at the centre of these experiences. It’s the reason he is the go-to guy for producing educational videos and podcasts for the Victorian Paediatric Palliative Care Program among many others.
Most of the workforce, and the public, know Rob best through his videos to support fundraising, including The Good Friday Appeal. The iconic Butterflies of 2003, made to support cardiac services at the RCH, introduced a new form of expression on screen – speaking to us as the child, but speaking of our collective vulnerability and resilience. It perfectly captured why we do what we do. Countless personal stories and carefully scripted montages have revealed time and time again the ordeal, the tenacity and the compassion that defines this special world that is a children’s hospital.
Through Rob’s lens we have seen and learned more about ourselves, and others.
Though he has no formal medical expertise, Rob has injected into our hospital some of the best medicines of all: trust and hope.
See Rob’s acceptance speech: