Our History

It started with a gift!

The establishment of the foundation started with a bequest from the late Gordon Wyndham McKeown, whose family had moved to the area in 1900. His bequest included a house, an art collection and shares valued at $770,000.

Gordon’s family owned a bakery and much of the land in Watton Street, Werribee. Gordon was a Director of the Conservatory of Music at University of Melbourne.

Prior to July 1993, the McKeown bequest was held in trust by the Werribee District Hospital. However, with the closure of the ageing Werribee District Hospital and the opening of Wyndham’s new public hospital, the trust funds were entrusted in 1993 to the Werribee District Hospital Charitable Foundation, more commonly known as Werribee Hospital Foundation.

Since that time the foundation has astutely managed the trust funds for the betterment of public hospital services.

In 2005, the foundation received a $1 million boost from the estate of the late Vera Hanorah Davis of Watton Street, Werribee.

Vera Davis was a popular local identity who lived and worked in Werribee until she passed away aged 102 years. Vera was a member of the prominent Davis family, who owned property and businesses in the region.

In accordance Vera’s wishes, a perpetual trust is now preserved to support public hospital services in Wyndham well into the future.

Werribee District Hospital – Synott Street, 1962 – 1994
(Photo courtesy of Werribee & District Historical Society)