The Sargood Foundation works to provide equipment, facilities and subsidised stays at Sargood on Collaroy for guests who otherwise could not afford this valuable experience.
Sargood on Collaroy has welcomed over 800 guests since opening in 2017. Of these guests, all of whom live with the physical and emotional impacts of spinal cord injury, 160 visitors have had their stay funded by the generosity of others through the Sargood Foundation.
Under the Aged Care pension, someone who suffers a spinal cord injury over the age of 65 is denied the opportunity to have a stay funded. Thanks to the support of Sargood Foundation donors, we are now able to provide those aged over 65 who are in financial distress the chance to visit Sargood on Collaroy. This is so important for our older guests as they are often facing an uncertain future and a more precarious financial situation than they would have anticipated.
We actively work to facilitate support for those who receive inadequate insurance or NDIS support – sometimes extending their stay or including much appreciated activities. A break at Sargood can bring together a family that has been through difficult times.
Our memorial grants program supports stays of people living with SCI who enjoy golf and we are able to provide a number of dedicated stays for these guests at no charge. A second memorial grant provides much needed support to creative activities that guests can participate in during a stay at Sargood.
We will have this year awarded over 35 stays through our grant program and continue to allocate funds to support much needed breaks. A stay at Sargood helps to build confidence, optimism and a realisation of what is possible for those living with spinal cord injury.
We will continue to provide travel grants to help those in financial hardship get to Sargood – often NDIS will just cover the stay and so we can assist with transport costs for guests. This year we will have awarded travel grants to 24 people living with SCI.
The Sargood Foundation offers a number of gym membership to people who live with SCI, so that they can benefit from 10 complimentary sessions with our resident exercise physiologist and use the on-site gym to increase their health and fitness. The year-long gym membership also often provides fellowship and company, as people who are living with spinal cord injury can often experience isolation. As such, these social connections established during a visit to Sargood on Collaroy are hugely beneficial.
We also work to provide essential equipment that enriches the lives and increases the wellbeing of guests. With the generous support of donors, over the last year, the Foundation has organised amongst other items:
- a motorised track system designed to transform nearly any wheelchair into an off-road vehicle
- two new kayaks
- a beach chair which is just for children (complete with dazzling paint job)
- photography equipment to support our residential course
- a new wave jet to make surfing easy for people with an SCI
- a pool chair so residents can enjoy Collaroy pool
- new gym equipment to develop upper body strength
- tennis chairs so we can offer tennis at Collaroy as a new activity.
There is a continual demand for new equipment so that we can offer our guests the chance to enjoy new activities and experiences, which are just critically important when you spend all day every day in a chair.