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Under the influence: A helping hand

Thursday 26th June 2014

In a three-part series, New Zealanders from different walks of life share stories about the people who have influenced them. Today we talk to Wellington Free Ambulance volunteer Jake Carlson.

Jake Carlson’s mother was diagnosed with cancer when he was just 15 years old. She was given 12 months to live.

Three years later, his mother was living in pain, still battling the disease. Jake was often left feeling helpless as he called the ambulance service to provide some relief for her.

While he didn’t realise it at the time, those men and women would inspire Jake to join their ranks.

Years later, when Jake had returned from travelling, he started reflecting back on his life trying to decide on a career path. He went out with some paramedics for work experience.

“I realised the impact that they had on my life and I think that inspired me to go on and begin my studies and volunteer and hopefully eventually work as a paramedic one day and do the same to others,” he says.

Now Jake is a volunteer emergency medical technician for Wellington Free Ambulance and works with the same people who helped his mum.