Every parent hopes and plans for the safe arrival of their baby, but for some, complications are part of the pregnancy journey.
Gympie mum Sarah Bryan was expecting to welcome her baby girl in early February but at just 29 weeks Sarah’s waters broke.
“It was touch and go at that time and we thought she would make an earlier appearance,” Mrs Bryan said.
The ordeal had a momentous impact on Mrs Bryan, her husband and their two other children, aged 10 and two, as Sarah faced seven weeks on the Sunshine Coast away from her young family in Gympie.
“After being told I couldn’t be too far away from the hospital, I thought I had to be confined to hospital grounds at first, but soon came to learn that I had the option to stay at Wishlist House (not far from hospital) or Reed house which is next to Nambour Hospital.
“I chose Reed House because they had what suited my needs at the time. Being pregnant, I didn’t want to walk or drive around a lot after my waters broke, so I felt staying at Reed House was a better option for me as they have amazing volunteers that would drive me to my hospital appointments when needed.”
Mrs Bryan described Wishlist’s affordable accommodation as “amazing” and said it was important that the Gympie community were aware the service existed.
“Having Reed House available meant so very much to me and my family. It really felt like a ‘home away from home’ where I could comfortably stay for weeks at a time and my family could come and visit.
“The Reed House volunteers are an incredible group of people and I’m glad I got to meet and enjoy their company, especially when my family couldn’t be there.” Almost two months later, baby Amara was born at 36 weeks on January 10 weighing a healthy 3.3kg.
I see so many posts on Facebook and hear that families are struggling with going back and forth to see loved ones who need treatment on the Sunny Coast. “Not many know about the wonderful work Wishlist does and what they offer families needing somewhere closer to stay and have peace of mind knowing they are closer to loved ones.”
According to recent patient data, in the 12 months to February 2021, more than 2,360 people from the Gympie, Cooloola and Maryborough region travelled to SCUH for emergency treatment.
Wishlist CEO Lisa Rowe said the need for additional hospital accommodation and options for transitional care was increasing close to SCUH.
“This need is the reason we are embarking on our major project Wishlist Centre which will offer a new level of hospital accommodation opposite the Sunshine Coast University Hospital to support patients and their families,” Ms Rowe said.
“We know our accommodation centres play a vital role in supporting Gympie families. More than 74% of referrals to Reed House, Wishlist House and ultimately Wishlist Centre, are from the Gympie, Cooloola, Maryborough and surrounds.
” “Thanks to Andrew Wallace MP and Commonwealth Government we have $12 million towards the build, however another $2 million is needed to ensure the facility is all it must be for patients and families.” Construction of Stage One of Wishlist Centre will begin in mid-2021.
To find out more, visit wishlistcentre.org.au. For more information about Wishlist’s affordable accommodation options, visit wishlist.org.au.