Maranatha House stage one expansion complete.

STAGE ONE: Maranatha residents and staff admiring the new administration wing. Photo: Contributed.
STAGE ONE: Maranatha residents and staff admiring the new administration wing. Photo: Contributed.

A new wing has been opened at Maranatha House.

The opening of the new administration and training centre marked the end of the aged care facility’s stage-one development plan.

Maranatha House general manager Debra Wells said the new facility is a culmination of three years work.

“This whole process started out when we received a federal government capital grant about three years ago.

“The new admin and training building has helped us to provide a much more centrally located area.

“Before all of the admin staff were spread out all over the facility – now we’re all in the same place,” Ms Wells said.

Maranatha House vice president of the board Terry Frost said the completion of the stage-one development is a good sign of the growth in the Wellington community.

“In the future we’re planning to build a 24/7 childcare facility and an aged care sensory garden.

“With the rapid expansion of the jail here, we want to be able to be able to make sure that there is an appropriate amount of childcare available to the workers.

“No matter what shift they may be working, we want to help,” he said. 

Ms Wells said further resident facilities are also planned for the future.

“We have undergone preliminary talks to expand this facility even more… which is exciting.

“We’ll also be adding another 20 beds, so that will create around another 12 jobs at the centre.

“We really want to make sure that we can get people moving to Wellington for their jobs at the jail and bring their families here, rather than heading to Dubbo like they did last time,” she said.

Ms Wells said that while she is immensely proud of the new wing, there was one particular highlight for her on the opening day.

“The best part for me was that my family came from Newcastle to be here. 

“It was really, really nice they made the effort to come,” she said.

Mr Frost heaped praise toward Ms Wells and the work she had done for the facility.

“Debra has really turned this place around from the institutionalised facility it was before.

“Maranatha House is owned by this community – there are no shareholders. A board of entirely local people meet consistently to make sure this place runs as well as it can,” he said.  

Ms Wells echoed Mr Frost’s statements, saying a quality team has been put together over the years.

“We’ve got about 80 staff here now and at least 60 of them are full-time – which is unheard of in the aged care industry.

“By improving on the quality of our staff, we have been able to improve on the quality of life for our residents,’ Ms Wells said.