Blessing ceremony for Ozcare’s award-winning Mackay aged-care facility

Mackay Opening

Just days after winning a prestigious Queensland construction award, Ozcare’s Mackay aged-care home has been named after a former princess who shunned riches to help the poor more than 800 years ago.  St Elizabeth of Hungary has been chosen as the namesake for the award-winning Ozcare aged care facility.

St Elizabeth, known for her great love for the poor and suffering, used her own funds to build a hospice where she served the sick and vulnerable.  We are inspired by St Elizabeth’s kindness and sacrifice at such a young age, and her devotion to creating a loving home for those in need.

The opening celebration of Ozcare’s St Elizabeth Villa Aged Care Facility which was featured by Channel 7 Mackay coincided with the home winning a state-wide Queensland Master Builders award. Our beautiful Mackay facility will now be a finalist in the aged-care category for the national construction awards in April 2022.

Now at full capacity, our 120-bed St Elizabeth Villa was blessed by Bishop of Rockhampton Michael McCarthy at an official opening on Wednesday, 17 November 2021, where St Elizabeth of Hungary was honoured.

“This is a fitting day to celebrate the official opening and blessing of a building named after St Elizabeth of Hungary,” Bishop McCarthy said.

“St Elizabeth lived a life dedicated to those less fortunate, including her efforts to establish a hospital where she helped to attend the ill almost 800 years ago. Her service for others is a great example for all people across our diocese.

“We know that the many residents of this facility have had lifetimes of serving their communities and they will be well attended here by Ozcare with its faith-based mission.”

Ozcare Head of Aged Care Lanna Ramsay said the blessing ceremony was taking place on the official feast day for St Elizabeth, who was the patron saint of nursing services, as well as homeless people, hospitals, charities and widows.

“St Elizabeth was an overwhelming favourite within Ozcare as the choice for this facility, because it is not only a place where residents are being cared for by nurses, allied health professionals and care staff, it is also their home,” Ms Ramsay said.

“We are very grateful for how well our service has been accepted by the local community. It reflects the ethos of Mackay, a community that supports each other, and it is our privilege to ensure residents receive excellent care in a nurturing, friendly environment.”

Woollam Constructions Managing Director Craig Percival said he was delighted that the facility was recognised at last weekend’s state-wide Queensland Master Builders Awards.

“That’s a recognition of the work that Woollam and Ozcare put into making these facilities such popular destinations for residents,” Mr Percival said.

“We’ve valued working so closely with Ozcare over many years. Woollam and Ozcare share a commitment to working across the state including in our inspiring regional cities. Woollam has been creating iconic buildings in Mackay for generations from our East Gordon Street office which opened in 1958.”

Joining in with residents and their families in the official blessing were Yuwi elder Philip Kemp, who performed a Welcome to Country, before country music legend Graeme Connors entertained guests.

Ozcare’s state-of-the art Mackay aged-care home with permanent, respite and dementia care opened in July 2020 and includes four dining rooms, a coffee shop, cinema, children’s playground, men’s shed, giant outdoor chess and overlooks the cane fields and Farleigh and Racecourse sugar mills.