Peter McConvill

Central Highlands Rural Health employs hundreds of clinical staff providing a wide variety of health and wellbeing services throughout Daylesford, Creswick, Clunes, Kyneton, Trentham and surrounding districts.

However, staff numbers don’t matter when you are seeking healthcare services for you or a loved-one. What does matter is the quality of that care. And ideally, you want your healthcare to be provided close to home, and thus close to family and friends.

For over 100 years, Creswick Health has been doing just that. What’s more, the quality of its care is only enhanced by the fact that many of its staff are themselves long-term local residents. Within the Creswick hospital, aged care home and community health campus, it is truly a case of ‘locals caring for locals’.

Olivia Blake

One of its local staff members is Enrolled Nurse Olivia Blake, who has cared for many local Creswick residents in the nursing home over the past 10 years. She fondly remembers looking after one of her former primary school teachers who took great comfort in seeing a familiar face. Olivia said, “For me, it was both a privilege and a joy to have the opportunity to look after my old teacher. I was able to personalise the type of care we offered.”

Olivia made a mid-career transition to nursing after she had children and realised that her perspective had changed. She says, “It was only after starting a family that I truly appreciated the value and reward in caring for others. From that time, nursing became the obvious choice for me.”

Olivia is very excited about starting work in the newly constructed wing of the nursing home. Yet, she is also quick to add that a “shiny new building” does not in itself equate to quality care. She asserts, “Quality care only comes from quality human carers. We provide excellent care in the old building, and will continue to do so in the new redevelopment as it gradually opens.”

“Mind you, the redevelopment offers some great opportunities to further enhance our level of care and thus the quality of life of our valued and beloved residents”, she added. The new wing includes home-like rooms with ensuites, various lounge and dining spaces and a dedicated activity room. Undoubtedly, its centrepiece is a landscaped sensory courtyard garden which was very generously donated by the Creswick & District Community Bank.

Like other nursing staff, Olivia thinks that there is perhaps just one missing component in the new nursing home wing. She recognises that the existing aging beds do not meet recent advances in technology. She says, “Current bedding technology is extremely beneficial to residents with weight, pain or pressure issues as well as those prone to falls or sleep disturbance.” Pictured is Olivia and also one of the spacious new rooms awaiting a new bed.

Creswick Health recognises this important need and so now appeals for the community’s support to help achieve a better quality of life for all our local aged care residents by upgrading the quality and therapeutic benefits of their bedding. Collaboration with the local community is very appropriate as it is local residents who will benefit in the years ahead.

In fact, Creswick Health has already welcomed its very first donation to fund a specialist bariatric bed. Around $5,000 was kindly provided by the tireless members of the Creswick Hospital Auxiliary, themselves all community-minded local residents who continually add yet another level to the concept of ‘locals caring for locals’.

Please consider offering a tax-deductible donation to support this bedding appeal by visiting  Depending on mattress quality, full bed sponsorship is either $3,167 or $3,967 and will be appropriately acknowledged with a special plaque. Part donations are also most appreciated.

Enquiries from individuals, community groups and businesses will be welcomed by Peter McConvill, Fundraising, Events & Marketing Manager on phone 0412 204 621 or via email


Peter McConvill is the Manager, Fundraising, Events & Marketing at Central Highlands Rural Health.