YEARS of dedicated work will come to fruition when The Forrest Centre officially opens its palliative care hospice on Saturday, September 15.
The major redevelopment, which also includes the expansion of the Shalom Place dementia care unit to 20 beds, was officially opened and blessed on Saturday.
Chairman of the board of directors Peter Fitzpatrick said in its 33-year history, the centre had established a reputation for high quality aged care services for Wagga Wagga and the surrounding region.
“This major addition to the centre reflects a community need for palliative care in a residential hospice setting as well as the increased need for dementia support,” Mr Fitzpatrick said.
“The centre recognised that while people who entered facilities were in need of specialist care, nursing homes needed also to provide quality accommodation options.”
The 10-bed hospice was a $4 million project and took 12 months to complete construction.
“While it was a challenge to maintain occupancy while we pulled the building apart, it was necessary to do it that way as we had a responsibility to continue care for our residents,” Mr Fitzpatrick said.
“I believe that we all understand the growing challenge presented to carers by a family member suffering from dementia or those who are needing palliative care as they approach the end of life, and the centre is preparing for this future need.”
This advertising feature is supported by the following businesses:
The hospice is part of the Palliative Care Alliance, which includes Murrumbidgee Local Health District, Calvary Hospital and Murrumbidgee Primary Health Network and will provide a co-ordinated approach to palliative care.
Mr Fitzpatrick paid tribute to the generosity of the Wagga Wagga community for the money and time donated towards funding the project.
“This very major project could not have been achieved without the $2 million donated by members of the community and businesses,” he said.
In addition to long-stay accommodation, the centre also operates Loreto Home of Compassion, which houses 76 residents, as well as Forrest Community Services, which provides in-home care to 350 people across the Riverina Murray local government areas.
The official opening and blessing of The Forrest Centre palliative care hospice will take place at 10.30am on Saturday, September 15 by Bishop Trevor Edwards, Vicar General of the Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn, and Sister Jennifer Barrow, Province Leader of the Sisters of the Little Company of Mary.
The hospice will open for viewing by the general public on Monday, September 17, with tours available from 3pm to 5.30pm.