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Residents, team members and volunteers from Rural Northwest Health’s Hopetoun campus have returned from their annual beach holiday with satisfied smiles and memories to share.
A caravan of 10 residents, seven team members and two volunteers left on March 5 for their annual pilgrimage to their favourite Ocean Grove holiday home. The crew stopped in Donald on the way to enjoy a morning tea at the home of team member Carmel Lowry.
New CEO Janet Feeny popped in to wish everyone a safe and happy trip, a gesture much appreciated by all. The next stop was visiting the carousel which overlooks the bay in Geelong.
Everyone had a ride on the beautifully preserved carousel, jolting wonderful memories of show day fun. Holiday organiser Norma Decker said she felt like Mary Poppins on the huge carousel.
The following day, former local Susie Gniel and her friend Kellie came to do everyone’s hair before they went out to the Barwon Heads Hotel for tea. Norma thanked Susie and Kellie who provide their services each time for free.
“We love and appreciate their generosity,” Norma said.
On Wednesday the crew boarded the ferry at Queenscliff for a return trip to Sorrento. Several residents and carers enjoyed a paddle and swim in the sea while all appreciated a picnic lunch.
Thursday was visitors day and Norma and her team thanked all who dropped in to see the residents and brought wonderful treats to share. The day was also tinged with sadness after resident Betty Hallam learned of the sudden death of her son in law Brian Koschitzke from Warracknabeal.
After hearing the devastating news, Betty returned home to be with family but she promises to be back next year for a swim in the heated pool.
Norma said the heated pool was a popular bonus.
“Everyone enjoyed a swim at different times and we loved just relaxing together every day or evening,” she said.
“We had so much fun, friendship and valuable time making new memories.
“Everyone is already looking forward to next year.”
While the crew was holidaying, Hopetoun’s Lifestyle program continued with wonderful special events for those who were unable to travel.
* The Hopetoun team is planning a four-day trip to Halls Gap from April 30. The closer trip is designed for those residents who have difficulty travelling the longer distances.
Holiday organisers Marilyn Clancy and Norma Decker wanted to thank everyone involved for all the help and organisation of the trip wonderful trip.
They also thanked Rural Northwest Health management for supporting the holidays and the family members who made food for them.
“We also want to thank our families who allow us to be away,” they said.
“It really is a complete team effort.”

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