Decades of dedication

March 30, 2023

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Decades of dedication
Pictured left to right: Friends of the Village members, Michael, Sherree, Peter, Lionel, Martin and Frances.

It’s been about 40 years since Peter Buckley played a vital role in helping build a hostel for older people in Parkes. Fast-forward to today, and his dedication to improving the Parkes community remains steadfast.

“I’ve been there since the start. It’s one of those jobs that I find hard to let go of,” he said.

It all began in 1984 when the Parkes Branch of the Knights of the Southern Cross approached the local member to see if it was possible to purchase 17 acres of Crown Land in Parkes for aged care that had initially been earmarked for a school.  

Peter and other community members were enthusiastic and quickly got behind the proposal, which led to a 30-bed hostel being built.

Today, residents have access to a 62-bed Residential Care home and 83-villa Retirement Village.

The 73-year-old’s prime contribution in recent years has been running an annual fete to raise funds for residents. Peter says the first fete was held in the early 1990s and has run every year since.

Now known as the Friends of the Village, the committee of volunteers, including Peter, raise about $10,000 at the fete each May, where the community is enthralled by white elephant stalls, jumping castles, chocolate wheels, the town band, and a hearty barbeque. They can also buy hand-made goods from residents.

“We are the connection between the village and the community,” he said.

Many village residents still have strong community connections. Resident, Bob Strickland, received the Parkes Shire 2023 Citizen of the Year award. Bob’s contribution and commitment to the local community were rightfully recognised.

“Whether it’s fundraising or supporting residents, our volunteers are truly valued. They are a vital part of residential aged care homes. Their generous donations and time bring smiles to residents’ faces. It takes a village to support the well-being of older people, and we are proud and grateful to have community members play their part at Southern Cross Care,” Peter said.

This year the fete is being held on Saturday 13 May on the Village grounds.

Pictured: Bob Strickland with his Parkes Shire 2023 Citizen of the Year award.

Care with Us

Like Peter and Bob, there are many ways in which you can help make a difference in someone’s life.

Donations and Bequests

We appreciate all bequests and donations and sincerely thank those people and their families who have named us as a beneficiary.


Whether it’s in one of our care homes or a retirement village, many older people have lost family and friends and loneliness and isolation can be very real for many. Becoming one of our volunteers can enhance the lives of people in countless ways.

Find out more

For more information on any of our services, or to enquire about ways in which you can support our organisation, phone 1800 632 314 or email


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