Farewell Friends of Strathearn Village

Farewell Friends of Strathearn Village


This is the wrong way around but I wish to wholeheartedly commend Caitlin Reid’s excellent article in the Scone Advocate today Thursday 9th August 2018.

See: https://www.sconeadvocate.com.au/story/5566352/thank-you-friends-photos-video/?cs=1533

Featured Image: Past Friends of Strathearn Village Mavis Merrick, Barbara Lowrie, Joan Keevers, Judy Manning, Elaine Collison, Marie Tilse, Sandra Carter and Dorothy Wharton

‘Thank you, friends’: Legacy of the Friends of Strathearn to live on for years to come


I gratefully acknowledge the report written by my good friend Ben Murphy in March 2017. I have just fielded a call (Monday 9th July 2018 @ 9:30am) from Sue Lewis to advise me the ‘Friends’ have finally decided to call it a day. There will be a farewell celebration luncheon on Friday 3rd. August 2018 at Strathearn Village, Stafford Street. I am delighted to be invited.


I am thrilled to report the production matched the importance and gravitas of the occasion.

See: https://www.facebook.com/sconeadvocate/posts/2258325404391446

See: https://www.facebook.com/sconeadvocate/videos/2258335147723805/

Janelle Birch was superb in setting the stage. David Martin was a most proficient and enthusiastic MC. Presentations were made to a wide variety of deserving recipients. Kate Mailer presented an extensive history. Anne Beckenham responded on behalf of the ‘Friends’ The very senior hierarchy of HammondCare graced the occasion with their presence. It closes a chapter of the history book. However I left with the distinct impression the organisation could not be in better hands. I was not quite so sure until recently. We (the old Board) could not have handled it.

July 24 2018 – 4:05PM

End of an era as Friends of Strathearn retire after 36 years of community service


Featured Image: Friends of Strathearn’s Di Chad, Barbara Mailer, Virginia Mulcahy, Marie Laurie, Yvonne McCready and Sue Lewis with long-term supporter Scone’s Ian Campbell

AFTER more than 36 years serving the community, the Friends of Strathearn will be celebrated with a well-earned retirement party next week.

The local organisation has proudly supported Strathearn residential aged care home for decades, raising funds to provide equipment including lifters, chairs and mattresses.

A lack of new members has ultimately led to the group needing to retire, but they are passing the responsibility to capable hands in HammondCare.

The Christian aged care charity, which took over the operation of the care home in 2016, will continue to coordinate fundraising and volunteering efforts.

Friends of Strathearn treasurer Ann Beckenham said it was time for the small team, whose number include members of many other local charity organisations, to call it a day.

“Many of the members have been in the group for more than 15 years and many have had family members in Strathearn over the years, so the decision to finalise the group was not arrived at easily,” Mrs Beckenham said.

“However, we recognise that changes occur for many reasons and we must move on.

“As a group, we appreciate the value that being a part of the larger HammondCare group has brought to Strathearn and we believe that both the Village and the House will be in good hands.”

Mrs Beckenham thanked Willow Tree Hotel licensees Ian and Karen Campbell in particular for their generous and significant support of the friends over many years.

HammondCare at Home general manager David Martin said he was grateful for the continued hard work of the Friends of Strathearn during the transition in ownership.

“The residents of Strathearn and of Scone owe a debt of gratitude to many dedicated volunteers over the years,” Mr Martin said.

“Local fundraising has been key to the health of the aged care home throughout its existence and that doesn’t change.”

Strathearn is in a great shape now, and HammondCare is well positioned to receive the baton and continue the great work of the friends.

“We want to encourage people in the community to continue volunteering and continue donating, with the assurance that funds raised in Scone will stay in Scone. There are many wonderful opportunities to partner with us in caring for older people living at home and in aged care.”

The Friends of Strathearn will be formally recognised with a thank you luncheon from 12 to 2pm on Friday, August 3, at Strathearn Village.

Past and present members of the volunteer organisation will gather so their hard work and legacy can be recognised by people including Upper Hunter MP Michael Johnsen, Upper Hunter Shire deputy mayor Maurice Collison, and HammondCare CEO Stephen Judd.

“Friends of Strathearn urgently looking for members to play an active role in fundraising efforts”

Ben Murphy       March 2 2017 – 4:15PM

Featured Image VITAL ROLE: Friends of Strathearn committee members Marie Laurie, Yvonne McCready, Sue Lewis, and Virginia Mulcahy at Elizabeth Park, Scone, on Thursday 1st March 2017.



The ‘Friends’ began life in 1982 as the Friends of the Upper Hunter Village Association. For over 36 years it has provided a continuum of selfless, devoted and compassionate local fund raising awareness campaigns on behalf of the various iterations of what has eventually emerged as Strathearn Village/HammondCare.  Their objective has always been provision of aged care modalities and equipment to assist the professional nursing staff in delivering world’s best practice attention for residents. We as a society are eternally grateful for their wonderful contribution. They rank among the finest volunteer community cadres ever assembled in Scone. I want to be first in the queue in acknowledging and recognizing their seminal achievements.

This group would be regarded by most as the public face of the organisation due to their perennial presence in Kelly Street selling raffle tickets. It’s great that Sue Lewis has told me the original minute books are in her safe keeping and will be deposited in perpetuity with the Scone & Upper Hunter Historical Society.

‘The Advocate’ Report

THE Friends of Strathearn may disband after more than 30 years if new members are not found soon.

A special meeting will be held at the Strathearn administration block in Stafford Street, Scone, on Monday, March 20.

The group is desperately looking for more members to play an active role in fundraising efforts within the community so it can continue providing much-needed equipment for the residents of Strathearn aged care.

President Yvonne McCready said it would be disappointing if the organisation was forced to fold.

“We have helped give them plenty of equipment over the years including beds, mattresses and wheelchairs,” she said.

“It makes the job a lot easier for staff if they’ve got those things.

“But, unless new members are willing to support Friends of Strathearn, it might be necessary to disband our group.

“It would be sad it that happens.”

The group urges those interested in joining to attend the upcoming meeting, which starts at 2pm.