New garden paves the way for more dementia care in the Maranoa

Pinaroo Garden Opening Large

A second secure dementia wing at Roma’s Pinaroo Aged Care is another step closer to reality with a newly landscaped garden now officially open at the 60-bed not-for-profit facility.

Last year, Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland provided a $250,000 Significant Grant to help with the conversion of an existing wing so that it is purpose-built to accommodate 11 additional dementia residents. The garden forms part of this conversion.

Pinaroo Roma Aged Care Chief Executive Officer Melanie Calvert said the completion of the garden is an important milestone in the project.

“It is incredibly exciting for us to see progress being made on this project,” Melanie said.

“The garden will provide a secure and serene place for dementia residents to spend time in. The new rotunda, in particular, will be well utilised,” she said.

Once completed the converted wing will provide 11 private purpose-built single rooms, each with an ensuite. The landscaped gardens, lounge room and meals area, will help to give the wing a homely feel while being fully integrated and secure with keypad access. This will allow Pinaroo to look after a total of 23 residents with the progressive disease.

Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer Gary Mark said helping communities to meet the challenges of an ageing population was part of his organisation’s long-term strategic focus.

“This partnership is about ensuring more residents with dementia will be able to remain in their own community, close to their loved ones and support networks, instead of having to move to another town,” Gary said.

“The local Freemasons felt strongly about the regional shortage in specialised residential dementia care and played a pivotal role in championing this initiative. The official opening of the new garden was the perfect way for Hand Heart Pocket and the local Freemasons to share this milestone with the community.”

Maranoa Freemason Brian Reardon said the local Freemasons were delighted to be associated with this project.

“We are proud to have campaigned for this important regional initiative through Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland,” Brian said.

“We look forward to the opening of the fully converted wing in late 2020, which we know will have a lasting impact on our community’s ability to care for the elderly,” he said.

Photo: Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer Gary Mark, Pinaroo Roma Aged Care Chief Executive Officer Melanie Calvert, Pinaroo Roma Aged Care Chairman Howard Hobbs and representatives of the Maranoa Freemasons at the official opening of the new garden. 

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