By Kath Gannaway
Eileen Glover has million dollar views to the Yarra River and she leaves no-one in any doubt that she is “living like a queen”.
Eileen, 93, came to Advent Care Yarra Ranges aged care facility in Warburton on a permanent basis just three months ago, after staying for a short stint of respite care.
She has all the energy and enthusiasm of a real estate agent as she shows visitors around her new room, one of 13 just completed as part of Stage 2 of a $2.7 million redevelopment.
“I can see the river, I can see the road and I can see the bridge just looking out my window,” she says, adding that with breakfast in bed and wonderful staff “I feel like I’m on holidays the whole time”.
Stage 1 of the three-stage redevelopment was completed in October last year adding 19 fully compliant resident rooms and this latest work brings the total number of rooms up to 32.
The redevelopment to date has seen spacious rooms with ensuite facilities, a new chapel, and refurbished dining room, and in what is believed to be an Australian first for an aged care facility, thermoskirt hydroponic heating concealed in the skirting boards.
While a number of rooms have views to the Yarra River, main road aspects and the inclusion of courtyards, and picture windows, has ensured all have views to the outdoors.
The project is a triumph for Advent Care and the Warburton community with the facility threatened with closure in 2016.
Advent Care CEO David Reece said the decision by the AdventCare Board to redevelop and expand the facility was made possible through tremendous community support, including support of the Warburton/Yarra Junction Bendigo Community Bank.
Along with the physical redevelopment, there has been an increase in staff and staff hours to cater for the additional residents.
Stage 2 was officially opened by Yarra Ranges Council Mayor Len Cox on Thursday, 26 July.
Cr Cox congratulated everyone involved in the project saying there was a demonstrated need for quality aged-care facilities.
“The need is growing very greatly all the time and will continue to do so as the population continues to grow,” he said.
Joining other officials, staff and residents and their families for a tour of the new section, he said he was tremendously impressed.
“This facility is absolutely beautiful and the staff are so good and caring, it must be a pleasure for everyone to be able to live and work here,” he said.
Mr Reece said when the redevelopment is completed, the facility will have increased from 31 beds to 42.
“We look forward to being able to provide permanent and respite residential care in Warburton for the community of the Warburton and Yarra Valleys for many years to come,” he said.