SwanCare was originally established in the early 1960’s as Swan Cottage Homes under the vision of Dr Richard Cleaver, the then MHR for Swan, who wanted to provide affordable, safe and secure accommodation that allows residents to socialise and still feel like they are part of a community.
The timeline below captures key milestones in SwanCare's history.
The sixties: the dream becomes reality
1960 - A bushfire in a pine plantation in Bentley becomes the catalyst for Dr Richard Cleaver to realise his long-held dream.
|Dr Cleaver sees the newly-cleared land as the ideal venue to build housing for people in their retirement and with the help of other interested people, formulates a plan which results in the formation of Swan Cottage Homes.|
1961 – The first residents move into their new homes. The inaugural Board of Management convenes for the first board meeting on October 31st to commence planning the first seven “aged persons” units to be constructed.
1966 - The original village is declared complete.
1967 - A generous benefactor offers a large block of land in Midland to the organisation in return for care. As a result, a new smaller satellite community is created a short distance away from the main Bentley campus.
1969 - The 44-room Ningana Nursing Home is founded on the main Bentley campus to provide on-site residential aged care for the benefit of the community.
The seventies: expansion
1972 – Richard Cleaver Lodge officially opens on the Bentley campus. 55 newly-built units offer multi-storey apartment style living as an additional housing choice for new residents.
1975 – A parcel of land becomes available in the nearby suburb of Carlisle from which an additional satellite community emerges. The sharply sloping rooflines of the resulting 48 independent living units, clustered around attractive garden courtyards, characterise the development of the Carlisle community as a new direction for the organisation and accurately represent the architectural style of the era.
|1976 - The organisation’s main administration office moves from its original premises in Graham Crescent to a new building in Pine Avenue on the main Bentley campus.
In the same year, the Waminda Hostel opens, offering residents the option of assisted daily living accommodation in comfortable self-contained apartments. This initiative achieves the objective of providing a continuum of care on the one site - a unique concept for this time and one that is soon emulated around the country by other aged care providers.
The eighties: years of celebration
1980’s - Warner’s Corner, adjacent to the Waminda Hostel, becomes the property maintenance depot to meet the increasing demand for on-site servicing and repairs to buildings, grounds and the increasing number of residents.
|Additional land is acquired to expand the capacity of the Nursing Home accommodation on the Bentley campus. Construction of the Tandara Nursing Home, adjacent to Ningana, increases the number of available high-care rooms to more than 140.
Incorporated in the design and layout of this purpose-built facility are dedicated social and recreational areas that encourage a holistic approach to caring for the frail aged.
The increasing trend towards resident-funded dwellings creates an opportunity to offer increased diversity in accommodation choices. Mavis Cleaver Court is constructed, offering a further 76 modern and spacious apartments.
1985 - The Silver Anniversary of the founding of Swan Cottage Homes is celebrated with the commissioning of new infrastructure projects including extensions to the Waminda Hostel and the official opening of the JP Stratton Activities Centre, the Cultural Centre, the Museum, the Ranyard Activities Centre and the Guy Murray Memorial Bowling Green.
1989 – A new multi-purpose building on the Bentley campus is completed. It includes a large auditorium on the ground floor which is used for concerts, fetes, meetings and lectures.
Administration is re-located to the first floor of the new building while additional facilities expand the Social Club to include an art studio, snooker room, computer room and coffee lounge.
The nineties: additional growth
The nineties sees the organisation embark on a process of preparation and planning in order to define and meet the challenges that lay ahead in relation to the predicted growth of the ageing population in the new millennium.
The new millennium: planning for the future
|2003/04 – At the commencement of the new millennium, the organisation is re-branded under the SwanCare Group name. This facilitates the development of a strong corporate and community identity and defines a dynamic presence for SwanCare Group as a recognised leader in the retirement living and aged care sector.|
|The Bentley campus is re-named ‘Bentley Park’ in recognition of the organisation’s link with the history of the site. The name Bentley Park is associated with the growth of the Swan River Colony and was in fact the original name for the suburb we now simply refer to as Bentley.|
Stage 1 of the six-stage masterplan redevelopment commences on a small parcel of vacant land within Bentley Park.
2004 – In line with the overall redevelopment strategy and in anticipation of the exciting period of growth ahead, SwanCare commences a process to rationalise its smaller property holdings in the metropolitan area. The Midland site is sold.
2005 - The construction of Stage 1, incorporating 58 new villa and apartment homes, is completed.
Stage 2, consisting of 54 new villas on the south eastern corner of Bentley Park, commences. By the end of 2005, a total of more than 100 new homes have been constructed at Bentley Park as part of the overall masterplan redevelopment.
2006 - 2007 – Residents from the Carlisle campus begin relocating to homes at Bentley Park in readiness for the sale of the Carlisle campus. All Carlisle residents are settled in their new homes by April 2007 and quickly become active members of the Bentley Park community.
New residents move into the newly-constructed villas built in Stage 2 of the redevelopment. The 27 new apartments, known as the Plantation Apartments, are completed in August 2007.
|2009 - The bright and contemporary 82-bed Kingia Care Facility opens its opens in March 2009. Kingia represents a significant change in emphasis in the way care services are delivered by SwanCare and challenges the aged care sector to embrace a more innovative approach to residential care service delivery.
|2009 – SwanCare commences construction of Australind Rise, a new retirement community in the south west coastal locality of Australind. It’s a project two years in the planning and a key part of the organisation’s expansion plans.|
New service initiatives are introduced in a number of business areas including Hospitality and Information Technology. Venue hire of the function areas in Kingia, which include first class facilities with full catering services for corporate and social events, commences as an additional income stream for SwanCare, a not-for-profit charitable organisation.
New information management systems improve the efficiency of residents’ records management and improve the resident/carer contact ratio.
2010 – The 50th anniversary of the foundation of SwanCare, formerly Swan Cottage Homes, is celebrated. The redevelopment of Bentley Park progresses to Stage 4 with the commencement of construction of large, suburban-style homes. The clean, modern designs of these new homes articulate the changing requirements and expectations in retirement living.
2011 - 2012 - Australind Rise opens its doors in early 2011, providing a valuable addition to an area with a growing retirement demographic and an increasing demand for aged care services and accommodation.
Construction work continues with new residents moving into both Bentley Park and Australind Rise. Planning begins for the next stage of redevelopment at Bentley Park.
2015 - Australind Rise launches its brand new leisure centre, The Rise, comprising of a heated swimming pool, gym, library, social space and kitchen.
Construction on Akora Apartments begins, a five-story complex on the corner of Jarrah Road and Adie Court.
2017 - Akora Apartments opens its doors. Akora is comprised of 44 modern apartments, cafe, residents' lounge, green room with mezzanine, rooftop space, an underground carpark and a sprawling landscaped grassed piazza.
|SwanCare At Home, SwanCare’s new home-based care offering is launched to provide caring, quality, and flexible services to even people across the wider community.|