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Sargood on Collaroy, an innovative new beachfront resort for people with spinal injuries designed by WMK, was opened by NSW Premier Mike Baird. Architect Cecelia Wells attended the official opening...

It really feels like a resort now. Styled to the max. Sea breeze flowing through light, spacious airiness. Lush growth all round. Even on a steamy November day it looks and feels cool. 

Opening day was a very special event, attended by Sargood ambassadors, personalities, dignitaries, and well-known sportspeople like Rod Macqueen, Peter Fitzsimons, and Rob Stokes. So many incredible people supporting a world-first crossover – a spinal health retreat.  It takes those external to our process to help us realise what has been achieved.  The common refrain was that it’s clearly going to be an amazing place to stay. 

The best part was seeing the delight on people’s faces and hearing the comments about how spacious it is and what a relief it was to not have to think about their environment and instead just enjoy.  Sargood Ambassador Heidi Hayden’s mum said if they’d had a place like Sargood when Heidi first came home from hospital, it would have made such a difference to them.  Early care and support can shave off that time “to get that hope, that attitude, that inspiration happening again”. 

Did you know:

— One person sustains a spinal cord injury every day

— 53% of injuries are caused by motor vehicle accidents

— 35% are the result of an everyday fall or sporting injury

— Most injuries occur in young people, particularly males aged 18 to 24

— Only 30% of people with a spinal injury return to work

— The cost to Australia from spinal cord injuries is $2b annually

At times we may think all our hard work goes by unnoticed. And then on a day like the Sargood on Collaroy opening day, you experience the project through the eyes of those who will get a massive lift from the place, and it’s all worth it.

To find out more about Sargood on Collaroy visit

Posted by Cecelia Wells

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