Colac’s Colanda Centre will close its doors for the last time within two weeks, marking the end of an era in Victorian disability services.
A Department of Health and Human Services spokesperson confirmed that Colanda’s remaining residents would move into new group homes by the end of October, and the Colac Herald understands all residents will be transferred from Colanda by October 23 and that the centre would permanently close on October 26.
Colanda has been a residential centre for people with disabilities since the 1970s, with its future hotly debated for more than a decade.
The DHHS has finished building six new group homes in Colac, and nine other homes across Geelong, Warrnambool and Ballarat for Colanda’s 74 residents.
“We’ve invested over $25 million to build 15 new homes for Colanda’s 74 residents – offering 24-hour support, personal space and privacy, and built with the residents’ needs and preferences in mind,” a department spokesperson said.
“All of the new houses are now complete and the last of Colanda’s residents will move into their new homes by the end of October.”
The Colac Herald understands that 14 residents were still living at Colanda, off Forest Street, Colac, last week.
Colanda’s closure follows the State Government’s push to transfer government disability accommodation and respite services to five private, non-government providers.
See today’s Colac Herald for more.