Brisbane couple David and Lil were informed that they were expecting twin boys. Soon after, they found out that one of the twins had a condition called Anencephaly - a neural tube defect that is not compatible with life. During the pregnancy, plans were put in place for Hummingbird House to support the family by providing end of-life care for their precious ‘Twin B’.
David and Lil, together with Jack’s sisters, Sophie and Annabelle and his twin brother Oliver, moved into Hummingbird House shortly after Jack passed away. During his funeral speech, Jack’s father David stated the following regarding their experience at Hummingbird House, “I have never felt so much love from a group of strangers in all my life…you gave us the greatest gift you could give to any parent… time. Time to grieve the loss of our beautiful boy, time to be with his body, time to create more memories”.
Hummingbird House is Queensland’s only children’s hospice. They provide short break stays, family support services, creative therapies, and care at the end of life, for children with life-limiting conditions and their families. Since officially opening in October 2016, Hummingbird House has welcomed 220 children and families into their warm embrace.
Glenva and Rosie moved into Clear Mountain Cottages in Brisbane’s north earlier this year and have really settled into their new life.
“The two of us have a lot of fun. We laugh a lot together,” says Rosie. “We are next door neighbours and we became friends quite quickly. It’s nice to have someone to keep you company.
“It’s beautiful here, our rooms are big, the dining room is nice and light, and we’ve got a large outdoor area to enjoy too.
“It’s great that we have the choice to do what we like, when we like. I can make myself a cuppa, it really does feel like home.”
Wesley Mission Queensland’s Director of Residential Aged Care, Annie Gibney, said the cottages offer residents living with dementia a holistic, person-centred model of care that empowers them to make their own choices and to be fully involved in all areas of their life, while still receiving 24-hour care.
“We know that people living with dementia thrive in smaller, intimate and peaceful environments without too much noise and heightened activity and the design of the cottages promotes this atmosphere,” she said.
“The feedback we are receiving from families and residents is incredibly positive. We have seen improvements in residents’ wellbeing and social engagement living in a safe, supported and friendly community where they have choice and control and we have seen spouses and relatives, who were once 24-hour carers, return to spending quality time with their loved ones.”