Construction underway on Wishlist’s most ambitious project

Shovels hit the ground today at the Birtinya site of Wishlist’s most ambitious project, Wishlist
Centre (Stage One).

Serendipitously situated at 1 Bright Place, Wishlist Centre (Stage One) will provide affordable
transitionary accommodation, complemented by unique services to support patients and their
families health journey.

Wishlist CEO Lisa Rowe said the $14 million project would ‘up the ante’ for supportive
environments dedicated to patients and their families needing ongoing treatment at the Sunshine
Coast University Hospital (SCUH).

“The sod-turn is a major milestone for a project that we have been working on for the past five
years,” Ms Rowe explains.

“Wishlist Centre will be a warm, supportive and stimulating environment with each of the four
levels delivering a different service or activity to provide physical, spiritual, emotional and
psychological support for patients and their families,” she said

“The pandemic has only highlighted the need for Wishlist Centre, with mental health and
wellbeing remaining crucial topics of concern in public healthcare. Through collaboration and
engagement, we identified the need for more low-cost accommodation to complement our
existing Reed House and Wishlist House and while doing so learned that services to improve the
mental health and wellbeing of our community were also required,” she said

Wishlist has collaborated with not-for-profits, non-government organisations and education
partners on unique initiatives that will support patients and their families within Wishlist Centre.
These services include cancer and mental health support programmes, student placement
options, vocational pathways and social enterprise.

The nation’s largest privately-owned building company Hutchinson Builders, has been awarded
the design and construction contract for the four-level facility opposite the SCUH. The project
expects to employ up to 170 different contractors on-site and indirectly create approximately 60
full-time roles.

Scott Hutchinson, Chairman Hutchinsons Builders, says that as a local Sunshine Coast builder,
Hutchies is proud to be working with Wishlist to help bring this purpose-designed centre to life.

“Wishlist Centre will play a pivotal role in supporting the region’s communities in times of need,”
said Mr Hutchinson

Wishlist Centre will offer 18 spacious and light-filled accommodation, with single, family, and
interconnecting rooms and a podium level with communal spaces for guests to use, including
kitchen and laundry facilities, along with break-out spaces for community activities and therapy
services to support the patients and their families.

The facility is supported by a $12 million Federal Government grant through the Australian
Government’s Department of Health, Community Health and Hospital Program.

Federal Member for Fisher Andrew Wallace said that Wishlist Centre would support the entire
community in Kawana, Birtinya, Warana and further afield.

“Wishlist Centre forms the missing piece in the puzzle in delivering a truly world-class health hub
in our community and fills an urgent gap in health provision on the Sunshine Coast by providing
low-cost accommodation for patients of the Sunshine Coast University Hospital and in particular
their families.” Mr Wallace said.

“As part of the 2019 Federal Budget, I secured a commitment of $12 million from the Morrison
Government, which is now allowing construction to get underway, and it is fantastic to see the
Government’s investment and Wishlist’s hard work coming to fruition,” he said.

Wishlist Centre (Stage One) is expected to open mid next year, with Wishlist currently fundraising
for an additional $2 million to ensure that once open, the facility is all it must be for patients and
their families

For more information on how you can support Wishlist’s $2 million by 2022 fundraising appeal,
visit www.wishlistcentre.org.au

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