St Agnes' Care & Lifestyle's dementia-specific Memory Support Village has received a $6.5 million funding boost from the Federal Government's Building Better Regions Fund.
This is in addition to the $5 million in funding from the State Government announced last year to construct the Community Centre in the village.
The Memory Support Village will involve the construction of the community centre, a world-class memory support village comprising 12 communal homes, a retail village and offices.
The $6.5 million in funding announced today (October 8) from the Building Better Regions Fund will go towards the construction of the 12 homes that will house 93 residents.
Federal member for Cowper Pat Conaghan said the funding will help deliver the project and further enrich the care for people living with dementia on the Mid North Coast.
"I'm extremely pleased to secure the funding for this ground-breaking facility. When I first saw the plans it was incredibly inspiring," he said.
"I thought that this was a brilliant idea and I pushed hard to get it going and ensure the funding was secured.
"The team at St Agnes' Care & Lifestyle has undertaken extensive research into the latest gold-standard practices for caring for those living with dementia developed in the Netherlands and will be bringing that to Australia."
The Memory Support Village is inspired by the Hogeweyk dementia village concept pioneered in the Netherlands and will offer a shift away from traditional models of dementia care in Australia.
The 12 homes will be uniquely stylised with residents grouped together by their shared life experiences and interests.
St Agnes' Catholic Parish chief executive officer Adam Spencer welcomed the funding announcement.
"On behalf of our Parish Priest Fr Paul Gooley and St Agnes' Care & Lifestyle general manager Bronwyn Chalker, I welcome the funding provided by the Federal Government and am delighted to be able to officially announce the grant," Mr Spencer said.
"Port Macquarie has an increasing aged population and the third highest prevalence rate of dementia in NSW. This project is the next level in responding to this growing demand and providing an innovative model of care that is specific to the needs of residents with dementia."
Each home will comprise of seven to eight individual resident bedrooms with private ensuite and shared living, dining, kitchen, laundry and outdoor areas.
"The Village has been designed with resident wellbeing in mind, providing an environment which offers engagement, social interaction, and time outdoors designed to improve the quality of life of residents," Mr Spencer said.
"The village won't just be for the residents but will be a place where their family can come and visit and enjoy their time spent together."
The project will also create jobs in the region in both the construction phase and once the village is operational.
"Once the project becomes fully operational, we expect it will employ 59 equivalent full-time jobs and deliver approximately 100 jobs throughout the construction phase," Mr Spencer said.
Construction on the village is due to start in January 2022, with the aim to be completed by June 2023.
"This project has been in the planning stages for a long time and with this funding we are able to move forward and make a difference in the lives of those affected by dementia and their families, as well as giving the local economy a boost in terms of job creation," Mr Spencer said.
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