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Published on: Philanthropy

Bear Cottage celebrates 21st Anniversary

Celebrating its 21st anniversary in 2022, Bear Cottage continues to be an uplifting and inspiring place where life is celebrated, lived to its fullest and also fondly remembered. The facility opened on 7 March 2001 as an integral component of the palliative care program by the Children’s Hospital at Westmead. Bear Cottage remains the only children’s hospice in NSW.

For over twelve years, the Ottomin Foundation has provided financial and volunteer support and, since 2010, the Ottomin Foundation has proudly funded the Music Therapist position.

Bear Cottage’s music therapy program remains a therapeutic blessing as it gently weaves in and around Bear Cottage giving the children and their families the opportunity to communicate their love, sadness, respect and happiness in a non-verbal way.

Almost 1500 children have been referred to Bear Cottage since it opened and 900 have come for a stay. Of those 900, 700 have since died and around 250 children have spent their last days, weeks or months at Bear Cottage surrounded by those they love.

Whilst at times Bear Cottage can be a place of great sadness, Bear Cottage’s music therapy contributes indispensable joy and it continues to be a great privilege for the Ottomin Foundation to be involved.