The Elsie’s Retreat Project is ramping up its efforts to obtain a palliative care hospice for the Coast and recently presented NSW Minister for Health, Brad Hazzard, with a 10,000 signature petition.
Elsie’s Retreat Chair and long-time campaigner, Margaret Pearce, said the government needed to act now on this pressing issue.
“We have many people suffering in our community every single day and it is just not fair,” Pearce said.
“The Central Coast is the largest region in NSW without its own stand-alone facility.
“Only when this hospice is constructed will we finally get the service our community deserves.
“Our community has walked this journey with us.
“I cannot thank locals enough for their ongoing support.
“We are not quite there yet.
“However, when you long for something sincerely, the whole world will help you.”
Fellow advocate, Oana McBride, called on Hazzard to table the petition in parliament and shine a spotlight on the Coast’s “missing facility”.
“Many families don’t realise the lack of choice until they are faced with a life limiting illness of a loved one,” she said.
“There is simply nowhere to go.
“Our community can assist us by signing our online petition at https://bit.ly/elsiesretreat.
“We know our neighbours in Newcastle and Sydney are well served by beautiful public palliative care hospices and it is time to have one here on the Coast.”
Committee Secretary, Judy Maudsley, said: “Knowing relatives or friends who have passed away with a painful end highlights the dire need in our community for healthcare facilities that can provide dignity, comfort and relief to our most vulnerable.”
Elsie’s Retreat will host its annual Black and Bling Gala Gatsby Ball on October 12 at Crowne Plaza, Terrigal.
Entertainment will be provided by the locally based New Empire Ballroom Ragtime Dance Orchestra.
Media release, Aug 5
Margaret Pearce, Elsie’s Retreat