In July 1984 there was a community plea for Palliative Care on the Central Coast. In October 1984, a Doctor reported on a conference he attended in another state, which showed standards of community based palliative care that were the highest in Australia. He made a recommendation to the Area Health Service that a Palliative Care service be established on the Central Coast. This resulted in a commitment to
develop a medical and nursing team, to provide support and training of doctors, especially General Practitioners and nursing staff on how to best care for terminally ill patients.
A suggestion was made by a retired Doctor living on the Central Coast to another colleague who was employed by the Area Health Service that a volunteer service involved in the care of cancer patients would be of great benefit to Palliative Care and the community.
A unique partnership was formed between the Area Health Service, sponsoring the medical and nursing part of Palliative Care and the Central Coast Hospice Palliative Care Foundation sponsoring the volunteer service with the community.
The first group of volunteers were trained in 1986 and the Foundation was established in 1988. We have two cottages, a day centre in Wyongah and another at Woy Woy. Patients and carers also come to Long Jetty Day Centre, which is also the Palliative Care centre for administration. The Foundation is made up of a board of directors and a secretary, who handles all administration matters. The directors all give of their time voluntarily and a meeting is usually held every two months. The directors are as follows:
- Mr Les Graham (Chairman)
- Mr David Palmer (Vice Chairman)
- Mr Paul Warwick (Treasurer/Secretary)
- Mr John Butlin (Director)
- Dr George Miller (Director)
- Mrs Joan Brown (Director/Volunteer Representative)
The Foundation provides support for the Volunteer Service who undertake activities such as respite in the home, transport of patients, bereavement support, relaxation and massage to name a few.
There are many community groups who put great energy and enthusiasm into raising funds on behalf of the Foundation.
We are a non-profit charitable organisation and rely solely on donations from the community. We are also very proud of our Palliative Care Service, our Day Centres, our staff and our very special volunteers.