News

Winter walk for Hilltop

By Daniel Hughes

A winter walk will soon be on the list of fundraising chances for Deniliquin residents looking to support Hilltop patient and carer accommodation centre in Albury.

Details have not been finalised, but will be announced when this occurs.

Eighty-five families from the Deniliquin area have utilised the Albury Wodonga centre in the past 24 months.

These families have stayed at the Hilltop centre for a total of 944 nights.

Overall, the centre has assisted 893 families with 11,077 nights of accommodation provided in the same period.

This high district use of the facility was revealed by the centre in seeking funding for an extension from Deniliquin residents.

The centre is primarily used for cancer patients at the adjacent Regional Cancer Centre, as well as their carers.

Costed at more than $3.8 million, stage two is expected to include an additional 10 accommodation suites, library/quiet room, gymnasium, additional laundry facilities and utility rooms and an additional administrative area.

Hilltop is seeking $1 million in community funding to support the project.

Deniliquin Rotarian Ian McAtamney said the Deniliquin and district community has always been happy to support the centre, because it is utilised by so many local families.

‘‘The demand for the Hilltop centre is almost a problem of its own success; it has been running at almost 100 per cent capacity since it opened,’’ he said.

‘‘It has provided a stress-free environment for Deniliquin and surrounding residents without having to worry about steep costs for accommodation.

‘‘All the new rooms will have balconies to help patrons have a more enjoyable stay.’’

Mr McAtamney said Coronavirus restrictions have already prevented many fundraising opportunities for Hilltop.

‘‘Our initial plans were cancelled, but we are now planning a winter walk to encourage people to donate,’’ he said.

‘‘We need to confirm details with the council first, and more information will be made available soon.’’

Rotary and Lions clubs, and Zonta of Albury Wodonga, spearheaded the initial fundraising campaign to establish Hilltop in 2012/2013.  The initial fundraising total was $5.5 million.
For stage two, more than $1.9 million has already been committed from the Commonwealth Government, with another $1,134,796 from the centre’s Future Fund. 

To contribute to the Hilltop capital appeal campaign, contact Alice Glachan at [email protected] or go to www.fightcancer.org.au

Mr McAtamney can also be contacted for more information by phoning 0418 452 521.