The Lilliane Brady Village (LBV) retirement home has celebrated another milestone in its 33 year history with the official opening of their lounge room extension and secure garden on Saturday morning.
The latest extensions at the Lilliane Brady Village (or the Village as it’s commonly known) have been a long time in the planning and after various delays over the past seven years work finally began in March this year.
LBV director of nursing Sharon Huon (who has worked at the Village for the past 25 years) said on Saturday the extension was welcomed by the staff, residents and their families.
“I’m always overwhelmed by the immense support we receive from the community,” Mrs Huon said.
“The garden in particular has been a long time dream.
“To have something nice for the residents, who are perhaps not so mobile, to look out of their window at is just wonderful.”
Mrs Huon acknowledged the work of the Pink Ladies fundraising committee, donations from Peak Gold Mines, an anonymous community group, various residents’ families and the Dancing Under The Stars fundraisers, that helped to build the extension and garden.
“The project is not yet finished,” Mrs Huon announced on Saturday.
“The Burgess family have donated money for us to also build a gazebo.”
Owned and operated by Cobar Shire Council, the Village opened in 1982 on August 22.
After lobbying the Commonwealth Government and receiving part funding for the project, the Village was established after extensive fundraising efforts by the local community, the Cobar Geriatric Committee and the Cobar Geriatric Care Committee.
The Village was initially built as a 14 bed nursing home with nine self-care units.
In 1991 the self-care units were upgraded to hostel care units and in 1996, five more hostel units, an in-house kitchen facility, hostel and nursing home dining facilities, a disabled bathroom and storage space were added.
By 2000, the facility had grown to 30 beds and by late 2001 the capacity had increased to 34 beds which also included one respite bed.
Over the years ongoing improvements have been made to the facility with the help of the Lilliane Brady Village Pink Ladies Committee which was formed in 1991.
In 2012 the Pink Ladies put forward $90,000 from their funds (which included some very generous donations from the community) for the lounge extension and construction of a secure garden area.
A donation of $45,000 from Peak Gold Mines along with additional funding and in kind services (planning, project management and the tender process) from Cobar Shire Council ensured the extensions would go ahead.
Also over the years various outdoor landscaping and paving work has been carried out with funding from various community donations.
The Pink Ladies have been fundraising for the past 24 years and in addition to their contributions towards the latest extension, they have also assisted with the purchase of numerous articles of furniture and equipment for the village which has helped to improve the residents’ quality of life.
LBV’s director of nursing, Sharon Huon, said the staff’s aim is to provide residents with a “home like environment”.
She said in addition to their donations, the Pink Ladies have also provided valuable volunteer services and support to the Village.
In 2004, in conjunction with the staff, the Pink Ladies launched the LBV Bus Appeal and began holding fundraising events including dinners and raffles.
They also created a ‘Village Calendar’ and catered for various events.
A $12,520 from Cobar’s first ‘Dancing Under The Stars’ fundraiser in April 2006 helped the Pink Ladies to reach their Bus Appeal goal of $148,000.
They took delivery of a modified bus in June 2007 that gave their residents a customised transport option specific to their needs.
Cobar’s second Dancing Under The Stars fundraiser in September 2007 raised $67,500 which was earmarked for the construction of a garden that would be suitable for residents with mobility restrictions and those suffering from dementia.
In 2012 the funds from another Dancing Under the Stars event ($17,000) were also were donated to the Village.
Dancing Under The Stars event coordinator John de Bruin was given the honour of officially opening the extensions and garden with Mrs Huon on Saturday.
The opening was attended by a large group of community members, residents’ families and contractors who carried out the extensions.