More than 160 people have signed a petition pushing for a footpath around Maranatha House.
Staff of the aged care facility presented the petition to Dubbo Regional Council with 163 signatures, however, mayor Ben Shields said at this stage council didn’t have the money for the path.
Maranatha House CEO Debra Wells said at the moment, the residents, many of whom were in wheelchairs or had walkers, were unable to get some fresh air and exercise outside.
“If the residents want to go for a walk in the afternoon there’s no path. The only path near us is at the back of the hospital. It’s not safe for them,” Ms Wells said.
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Mayor Ben Shields said he thought the footpath was a “worthy project”, that needed to be done for the people of Wellington, especially now the town had lost Bellhaven Aged Care Facility.
Cr Shields said council should start discussions with the NSW government about constructing the path.
“We shouldn't simply be building a massive footpath without looking for the state to contribute, especially since they own the hospital and largely have the vast bulk of the infrastructure in there,” he said.
“The people of Maranatha need to rest assured we are moving down that path but we need to work out our funding arrangements for it.”
Ms Wells said she didn't want to wait too long for action on the path.
“You’ve got to keep in mind that these are some of the oldest and most frail residents of Wellington, if they have to wait for it to be built they might not be here to see it,” she said.
You’ve got to keep in mind that these are some of the oldest and most frail residents of Wellington...Debra Wells
The petition was started by Maranatha House resident Leo Doherty.
“He spent a lot of time around the street getting people to sign. A lot of the community have family members who reside here at Maranatha House so they were only to happy to sign,” Ms Wells said.
While the petition has already been handed to council, Ms Wells encouraged those who wanted to make their support known to contact council directly.