A fundraising campaign has been launched to help fund an innovative care facility in Invercargill that could become the cornerstone of elderly care in New Zealand.
The Hawthorndale Care Village, which will be developed on the former Hawthorndale School site on Tay Street, will incorporate community-based aged and dementia care based on the Dutch De Hogeweyk model.
The village would essentially replicate everyday life for its residents but in a secure and safe setting. It would have 12 homes with seven bedrooms each, shared living and kitchens, a hairdresser, café, food market, hall, tool shed and vegetable garden, prayer room, and playground for families of those who visit.
The village would also incorporate hospital care, a rest home, dementia care, and 10 units for independent retirement living.
According to project team member Paddy O’Brien, this new model would challenge current aged care models.
Paddy says once people move into rest homes, they are somewhere new, institutional, and unfamiliar. The Hawthorndale Care Village would preserve a sense of everyday life, but with support and help.
So far, the $31.5-million project has received funding from ILT Foundation, a former board member, Community Trust South, and the Southland and Otago community – including the O’Donnell family. Fundraising will now begin to make up the shortfall of just under $14 million.
ILT Foundation President Alan Dennis said The Hawthorndale Care Village could redefine aged care in New Zealand.
“Invercargill has a proud history of innovation and setting bold new standards. This project is no exception.
“Supporting projects which will positively impact the lives of those in our community is at the very core of the ILT Foundation’s values. Supporting the Hawthorndale Care Village aligns strongly with that and enables us to continue making a difference for the elderly.”
“It is said that it takes a village to raise a child, it should be no surprise then to assume that it surely takes a village to meet the special needs of our older folk.”
Invercargill City Mayor Sir Tim Shadbolt was equally as supportive of the development.
“As the baby boomers face retirement and the young ones suffer from illness or injuries, our health services will come under even greater stress. Generous support has ensured this facility will have a great chance of succeeding. Well done, Southland.”
The Hawthorndale Care Village is moving to the concept design stage, and plans are expected to be finished by March 2020, with contruction completed in late 2023.