The Healesville Retreat: Building up families of children with cancer

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May 20, 2019

“The family is fractured when a child is diagnosed” says David Rogers, CEO of Challenge, a support organisation for families of children with cancer.

Belinda and Michael Timms know this all too well. Their son, Nicholas, was diagnosed with a tumor in his liver at only one year old.

Belinda and Michael Timms

He would not live to see his second birthday. And sadly at 21 months old, on the 7th of December in 2008, he passed away.

“He was just this kid that was funny and happy and loved it, and didn’t know he was going through it all.” says Belinda.

Michael and Belinda honour their son.

And in his memory, have started a foundation, one that -like Challenge- helps families and their children through this most difficult journey.

“Challenge had always been really good to us” reflected Michael. And with that connection Michael and Belinda had a vision for a hobby farm, the Healesville retreat.

A twin dormitory design that can house two families at a time, with a shared common room and kitchen facilities.

Belinda and Michael Timms
It has been over a decade since his passing, and the Nicholas Timms Foundation has raised over 1.5 Million dollars. Through Michael and Belinda’s tireless work they have rallied immense support and inspired the team here at Carter Grange to build the Healesville Retreat.

The Healesville retreat is a place where the families of children with cancer can go, and be together. Where they can have positive experiences in spite of their difficult journey. David of Challenge describes why this is so important.

“It’s not just the patient getting sick, it’s the whole family” and goes on to state that “around sixty percent of families will divorce or separate through the exercise.” The endeavour of Heallesville Retreat is not just one for the child, but for the whole family to bond.

And it is here that Carter Grange Homes became involved.

Carter Grange, have been avid supporters of Challenge for the last seven years. Whether by chance or design, Michael too had a connection to Carter Grange, who is a trusted supplier. In support to the Nicholas Timms foundation and the dedicated team at Challenge, we are so proud to report that we have commenced the beginning of this wonderful project.

If you’d like to know more about the Michael Timms foundation, go to or make a donation by visiting If you want to know more about Challenge or would like to lend your support, please visit them at

Carter Grange would also like to thank the below suppliers who have contributed:

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