Adjournment, 15 September 2015

Katie Rose Cottage

Mr ELMES (Noosa—LNP) (6.43 pm): On 16 November 2011 I rose in the parliament to speak about the fine work being done in a community hospice in my electorate, Katie Rose Cottage. The hospice model was developed by Terry Clarke-Burrows and Sue Story and has been supported by a very large and passionate group of volunteers who did it all, from mowing lawns, helping in the admin office, giving their time in the op shops across the Sunshine Coast and donating goods and services.

Katie Rose Cottage provided services for terminally ill adults, children and their carers and this organisation was embraced not only by the Noosa community but by families in need much further afield.

I wish I could say that Katie Rose Cottage, rebadged as Sunshine Hospice, has continued to flourish and provide the caring service which became its hallmark for many years. As with all not-for-profit organisations, different committees have different ideas in terms of their strategic direction. The current administration is not focused on the original community model, which worked, but more on growth and a business model. This has resulted in the regrettable cessation of services by the current board that has also negotiated the termination of its lease and put into storage all of the items donated to Katie Rose Cottage.

There was no reason for this closure, as I believe that both of these models could have, in fact, existed side by side: one continuing to operate as small in-home community funded operation whilst plans to expand and grow the vision could have been built alongside with patience and due diligence.

The current board of the Sunshine Hospice have kept the large volunteer base and members in the dark as to the actual status of plans and the financial situation, so much so that the Katie Rose Cottage name is now registered and owned by a recently formed group called the Katie Rose Cottage Committee which is intent on showing its support and willingness to return to the previously successful model of palliative care.

It is this committee that has assembled an impressive nonconforming petition with 954 hard-copy signatures, which I now table.

Tabled paper: Nonconforming petition regarding the re-opening of Katie Rose Cottage in Doonan.

I would like to direct the attention of the House to an online petition which has more than 1,300 signatures. This level of commitment is deserving of a good outcome and I wish the Katie Rose Cottage Committee every success with its plans for palliative care in Noosa and across the Sunshine Coast.