Keep Coraki care in local hands

THE people in the lower river area of the Richmond Valley want to keep the Mid-Richmond Residents Village at Coraki in community hands.

At a meeting in Coraki on Thursday, about 70 members of the community turned up to send a message to Richmond Valley Council.

“It was paid for by the community, it should stay in community hands,” Mid- Richmond Residents Limited secretary Joan Roots said.

The group was formed two years ago after the council announced it no longer wanted to manage the 40-bed aged care centre.

“It is the wish of the community that we take over the management,” Mrs Roots said.

The facility, built in 1983, was paid for with cash donations of up to $7000 by community members.

The council held three meetings last Thursday to explain its intentions for the facility to residents and their families, the facility's staff and the local community.

The council, in conjunction with the NSW Land and Property Management Authority (formerly the Department of Lands) which owns the facility, has called for expressions of interest from aged care providers to take over its management.

The residents group plans to lodge a tender.

Richmond Valley Council general manager Brian Wilkinson said the council was not specialised in providing aged care and the facility ran at a $30,000 loss last year.

A number of providers were interested in taking it over he said.

“The council is committed to ensuring all beds will be retained on that site into the future,” he said.

On Friday the Land and Property Management Authority will meet interested aged care providers to explain the tendering process and how to lodge a submission.

Mr Wilkinson said the council initially got involved in the facility because there was no other body who could manage it at that stage.


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