Units for the aged planned for Queensland

March 27, 2012 by Community Editor
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Jewish communal organisations from the Gold Coast, Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast have voted in favour of investing approximately $2.7m to build 10-12 two-bedroom units for aged Jewish people.

Jason Steinberg

The Queensland Jewish Board of Deputies convened  the meeting. Its president,  Jason Steinberg, said that in 2004 the late Harold John Unger left a significant amount of money to his Board for the purpose to assist in building a home for aged people of Jewish faith in Queensland.

“There were 29 communal organisations that voted at the meeting and the majority wanted to supplement the existing six one-bedroom units at our communal retirement facility on Brisbane’s south-side,” Jason said.

“This is an historic event for our small community – we have finally resolved to invest in a project that will deliver significant benefits to aged Jewish people and the community at large.”

Lewis Saragossi, who is the President of the retirement village and a major benefactor to the community said the investment would bring a new era to the community.

“This very generous financial support from the late Harold Unger and the QJBD means that aged Jewish people in Queensland will have the opportunity to retire gracefully in a fabulous rural setting,” Lewis said.

Speaking on behalf of the Jewish Communal Centre (Queensland) where the new units will be built, Mark Dindas, who was the founding president of Queensland’s first Jewish day-school Sinai College, said the new units will add significantly to the community.

“Being on the same campus as our communal centre and Sinai College pre-school and primary school, means the intergenerational interaction will be terrific,” Mark said.

The QJBD had been involved in an exhaustive search, led by David Paratz (immediate past president, current vice president and chairman of the aged care committee) to find a suitable project to support since 2004. Many projects had been put forward and considered by the community covering the full range of care options from independent living to frail-aged care. During that time the bequest was invested in a managed fund and has grown steadily over time.
Jason said that ultimately, the amount of money was not enough to build a nursing home, which was where the greatest need is, so the community had identified that the only achievable projects were assisted living.

Other project options put to the QJBD special meeting also included the purchase of a unit block close the CBD, a combination of building at the communal centre and purchasing a unit block, or to do nothing and search for another project.

A small steering committee to be led by Lewis Saragossi and Mark Dindas and made up of a representative from the QJBD, the retirement village and the Jewish Communal Centre will be established to develop the plans for the new units.

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