St John of God honours founders

ST John of God Warrnambool Hospital’s remodelled community mental health service building will be officially reopened tomorrow with a tribute to the hospital’s founders.

The building has been renamed as ‘The Glenrye Centre’ in honour of the original hospital service that was established by three Sisters of St John of God in ‘Glenrye House’ on the corner of Ardlie Street and Botanic Road in 1939.

The Glenrye Centre hosts the hospital’s community mental health and perinatal mental health teams and has been given a refreshed interior, remodelled entrance and a new private reflection area.

Mental health services manager John Parkinson said the upgrade was needed to cope with growing demand for services.

“There has been increasing demand from people in the community and through multiple referral systems,” Mr Parkinson said. 

The refurbishment would provide a more private and inviting setting and give people more confidence to talk about their issues, he said.

The hospital’s mental health service started seven years ago and presently employs 16 health professionals supporting people with problems such as anxiety, depression, adjustment issues, disorders, stress and family disengagement.

The hospital’s chief executive officer Glen Power said it had recently decided to bolster its social outreach services to young people and families.

“St John of God Health Care is placing particular emphasis on youth services and perinatal support,” Dr Power said.

“Our Raphael Centre services for perinatal and infant mental health will now involve a multi-disciplinary team including psychiatry, mental health nurse and psychology caregivers in a model that is recognised as best practice by clinical leaders,” Dr Power said.

The remodelled Glenrye Centre will be officially reopened at a ceremony at 11am tomorrow.

The public is welcome to attend.

On October 18-19, the hospital will celebrate the 75th anniversary of when the Sisters of St John of God began providing health care on the site of the present hospital.

The milestone will be marked with a 75th anniversary party, the launching of a history book, and a celebratory Eucharistic Mass at St Joseph’s Church.

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