Help for fam­i­lies in tough times

Maroochy Weekly - - FRONT PAGE - Carly Cullen Carly.Cullen@sc­

IMAG­INE hav­ing a loved one in hospi­tal and not be­ing able to stay close enough to see them reg­u­larly.

For many fam­i­lies this is a real­ity, so Sun­shine Coast Health Foun­da­tion and Wish­list are join­ing forces with Aus­mar Homes and lo­cal con­trac­tors to build the fourth The House the Coast Built.

It’s an am­bi­tious project for an af­ford­able ac­com­mo­da­tion fa­cil­ity for fam­i­lies with un­well rel­a­tives re­ceiv­ing life­sav­ing treat­ment at Sun­shine Coast Univer­sity Hospi­tal.

With funds raised from 92.7 Mix FM’s Give Me 5 for Kids and other ini­tia­tives, Wish­list has pur­chased a piece of land close to the hospi­tal.

Set­tle­ment was set for Oc­to­ber 12, mark­ing the of­fi­cial start to this mas­sive project, which will be a com­mu­nity ef­fort with trades and ser­vices be­ing do­nated from the re­gion.

Wish­list chief ex­ec­u­tive Lisa Rowe said the project was about har­ness­ing com­mu­nity con­tract sup­port with Aus­mar homes “to build a house for noth­ing”.

Pre­vi­ously Wish­list has auc­tioned off the char­ity-built homes, with all pro­ceeds go­ing to­wards a spe­cific cause.

“This time the dif­fer­ence is we are re­tain­ing the house and the prop­erty and us­ing it for the pur­pose of fam­ily ac­com­mo­da­tion – it’s within walk­ing dis­tance of the hospi­tal,” Ms Rowe said.

“There’s also a shut­tle ser­vice that runs, since SCUH opened, to pro­vide emer­gency home ser­vice for fam­i­lies in cri­sis but it’s not close enough.

“When you have a child in the chil­dren’s ward that you need to be close to or whether you’re vis­it­ing the hospi­tal reg­u­larly for some­one you care about, it’s ideal to be closer.”

Aus­mar Homes busi­ness unit man­ager Josh Green said they hoped to be on site next year in Fe­bru­ary and then hand over in July.

“Aus­mar are putting the house to­gether but aren’t phys­i­cally do­ing the work,” Mr Green said.

“It’s all of the guys that work with us week in and week out that are mak­ing it hap­pen. With­out them we can’t build the house, we can’t build a half-a-mil­lion­dol­lar house for free. It’s takes 150-odd peo­ple to all put in to make it hap­pen.”

This is Wish­list’s next step to sup­port fam­i­lies with hospi­tal ac­com­mo­da­tion af­ter tak­ing over the Reed House emer­gency ac­com­mo­da­tion in Nam­bour.


BUILD­ING A FU­TURE: Wish­list and Aus­mar Homes are col­lab­o­rat­ing build the fourth The House the Coast Built. Pic­tured: Wish­list CEO Lisa Rowe and Aus­mar Homes busi­ness unit man­ager Josh Green.

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