“Pathway to Independence”


What is spinal cord injury or trauma?

Every year 300 Australians sustain an injury where their spinal cord is damaged. It can happen to anyone. The injury interrupts nerve signals between the brain and body. The physical impact is permanent, life changing and can involve pain and paralysis. More than 50% of spinal cord injuries are from motor vehicle accidents. A further 28% are due to falls. 15 – 24-year olds are the largest group suffering spinal cord trauma, but there is also an increase in injuries to people in their mid-40’s.

What is paraplegia and what is quadriplegia?
Paraplegia is paralysis (a varying loss of sensation and movement) in the lower part of the body – the legs, and part or all of the trunk. Quadriplegia is paralysis in the arms, legs and most or all of the trunk. Every injury is different and there may be a degree of movement or sensation remaining.
Can someone with a spinal cord injury live independently?

Yes. A key function of Sargood on Collaroy is to also operate as a place of learning for people with a spinal cord injury.

  • Occupational Therapy support and services aim to help guests of Sargood on Collaroy to discover equipment, techniques and strategies to maximise their ability for independent participation in everyday activities
  • Vocational consultants help guide those who wish to explore returning to work or study
  • Clinical nurse educators offer specialist education to guests and staff in all aspects of spinal injury
What are the key components to increase independence?

That varies from person to person and depends on the injuries involved. There are many new life challenges for people with spinal injury. The key components may include:

  • Physical rehabilitation
  • Dealing with emotional impacts, confidence and self-esteem
  • Managing relationships
  • Learning to use new technologies and tools
  • Developing routines to live independently
  • Moving back to an adapted home
  • Gaining new skills for working life
  • Connecting with the community
  • Peer to peer learning

Learning these skills and re-building confidence can be key to moving forward with a rewarding and independent life. Sargood on Collaroy helps people achieve these life goals.


What is Sargood on Collaroy?

Sargood on Collaroy is a purpose-built health and wellness resort in Australia for people living with a spinal cord injury, their families and carers.

Sargood on Collaroy is essentially a place of learning for people impacted by a spinal cord injury to gain the confidence and skills to return to a full and rewarding life. The expert clinical team, consisting of Occupational Therapists, Vocational Therapists, Exercise Physiologists, and Recreational Therapists work together with guests using specialized equipment, techniques and strategies to maximize their ability for independent living, participate in recreation and leisure activities and return to work or study.

Why is Sargood on Collaroy so unique?

Sargood on Collaroy is not only Australia’s, but the world’s – first health and wellness retreat, providing purpose built, accessible accommodation and services for people living with a spinal cord injury and their families

Sargood on Collaroy aims to promote social integration, activity and support for people with a spinal cord injury whilst guests enjoy much needed refreshment and inspiration with their families. This holistic approach is to make people with a SCI happier, healthier, and prepared to tackle the next big thing, be it returning to school, study or work after their injury, or perhaps even starting a family. Whatever the scenario, with the equipment, expert clinical knowledge and the environment to facilitate change, Sargood on Collaroy seeks to provide rapid improvement to the lives of those with a SCI.


Who can stay at Sargood on Collaroy?

A person living with a spinal cord injury and their family, friends and/or carer.

What will guests who stay at Sargood on Collaroy do each day?

Guests of Sargood on Collaroy can participate in a variety of recreation and leisure activities and wellness services. Wellness services include occupational therapy, vocational advice and specialist nursing services. Guests are also invited to just refresh, relax and enjoy the facility and local environment with family and friends.

What recreational and leisure activities can guests participate in?

All guests are invited to choose from activities such as surfing, kayaking, rock climbing, sailing, golf, tennis, fishing and cycling alongside more therapeutic activities including yoga, cooking, ceramics, gardening or even a trip to the local Farmers Markets. These activities build confidence, optimism and a realization of what is possible for those living with a SCI.

Is there a Gym at Sargood on Collaroy?

Open to all abilities, Club Sargood gym is designed to provide people with a disability access to supported recreation, specialist assistance and adaptive equipment.

How long is a typical stay?

There is no ‘typical stay’. Every guest will have different needs and goals, so lengths of stays will vary. However, Sargood on Collaroy does not offer a permanent resident stay, the maximum length of stay is 28 days.

Guests can come to Sargood on Collaroy at any stage – while in hospital for weekend leave, for short stays or for rest and relaxation once living in the community.

What equipment is there in the room

Specialized equipment and supports are standard room features. They include but are not limited to; ceiling hoists, electric ergonomic hi/lo beds, height adjustable kitchen bench tops and a deluxe bathroom with adjustable rails, back rest and shower seat. All rooms and facilities feature the latest in-home automation and adaptive technology. There is also a large variety of adaptive recreational equipment onsite that can be used at a guest’s leisure.

Can I bring children and family members?

Yes, children family members and friends are most welcome to stay at Sargood, subject to availability of rooms. Interconnecting rooms are available if necessary and the spacious rooms can accommodate everyone from solo travelers to families.

What about accessibility?

Sargood on Collaroy has been purpose built for people living with a spinal cord injury. Throughout the design phase a number of access consultants and wheelchair users were engaged to make sure that the building was completely accessible and easy to use. Open spaces, extra wide doors and windows at wheelchair height, recessed door tracks are all key features, designed to make your stay as comfortable and independent as possible

What do you have as adaptive technology?

All rooms and facilities feature the latest in-home automation (iPad activated room controls) and adaptive technology.

Can guests visit more than once?

Yes. The activities, wellness service offerings and courses are constantly changing at Sargood, so guests are encouraged to return regularly to see what new and exciting things are on offer.


Will Sargood on Collaroy provide carers?

You have the option to visit with your own carers or receive assistance from the Sargood on Collaroy’s team of guest attendants. Specifically trained to work with people with a spinal cord injury, guest attendants can assist with everything from recreation and leisure to personal care, mealtime assistance and community access.

Can private carers come too?

Yes, guests are welcome to bring their own carers with them. Interconnecting rooms are available on request (charges apply).

What clinical services are available?

The team of specialist staff available to provide qualified guidance, assistance and support throughout your stay includes an on-site Registered Nurse, Occupational Therapist, Exercise Physiologist and Recreational Therapist. But please note Sargood on Collaroy is not a medical facility.

Will ventilated quadriplegics be able to attend?

Yes. Sargood on Collaroy is happy to welcome ventilated quadriplegics. Staff are currently not trained to be able to operate ventilators, so guests must come with their own carers. Please note oxygen is not available onsite. If oxygen is required it must be bought by the guest.

Do guests have to reside in Australia to attend?

No, Sargood on Collaroy welcomes visitors from all over the world – in its first-year visitors and their families from NZ, Norway and Canada have been hosted at Sargood on Collaroy.

How are stays at Sargood on Collaroy financed?

Funding a stay at Sargood on Collaroy can be arranged through various avenues depending on your level of cover, insurance scheme or financial circumstance – for more details visit http://sargoodoncollaroy.com/stay/funding/

Where funding options are not available through icare, NDIS other funders or self-funding, the Sargood Foundation can offer sponsored stays for guests, resident in Australia, who do not have means for some of or all of their stay. Through the generosity of our supporters the Sargood Foundation is able to consider applications to stay using a donated accommodation package
To discuss funding options and assistance please contact enquiries@sargoodoncollaroy or phone 02 8597 0600

Will Sargood on Collaroy offer respite care?

Yes. It is a fundamental part of Sargood on Collaroy’s philosophy to provide the chance for people with a spinal injury and their families to have a break – either together or separately. This break also provides the opportunity to acquire new skills, evaluate the latest technology available for assisted living and share experiences and life learning with other participants.

How do I know it will suit my needs?

Before confirming your stay all prospective guests will complete the comprehensive booking form. The information you provide will help personalise your stay. From injury level and care needs to daily living equipment, room preferences and activities of interest, your stay will be customised prior to your arrival.

How do I make a reservation?

Please contact enquiries@sargoodoncollaroy or phone 02 8597 0600.


How we help

The Sargood Foundation is a DGR registered charity which exists to support and resource the work of Sargood on Collaroy to provide people affected by a SCI with the opportunities to live life to the fullest. The Sargood Foundation seeks to support Sargood on Collaroy by:

  • providing funding assistance where possible for guest stays for those in need of financial assistance. Generally guest stays are self funded, funded via iCare, NDIS or other insurance cover, however, there are some people living with a SCI who are residents of Australia who are not covered by insurance or have any other means of funding their stay.
  • providing essential equipment to facilitate support activities
  • encouraging independent living within the general community

If you wish to apply for financial assistance towards your stay from the Sargood Foundation, please call the Executive Officer on 0415 127 363 or email us at susan@sargood.org.au

How you can help us?

The Sargood Foundation continues to raise funds to assist those who are unable to fund their stay and to purchase much needed equipment to broaden the activities and opportunities at Sargood on Collaroy. The Sargood Foundation continues to raise funds to assist those who are unable to fund their stay and to purchase much needed equipment to broaden the activities and opportunities at Sargood on Collaroy. 
You can make a real impact on someone’s life by supporting the Sargood Foundation. Some of the ways our donors are able to help the Foundation’s work are by

  • Funding a stay for a guest or family in need of assistance• Supporting visitors to enjoy participation in programs and activities during a stay
  • Working with the Foundation to develop essential additional programs for guests and guest groups
  • Purchasing much needed equipment for the use of guests during their stay• Providing employment training and opportunities for those with an SCI



For further information please contact Susan Johnston at the Sargood Foundation on 0415 127 363 or susan@sargood.org.au

Invest in the future of people with spinal CORD injury