Peter wins the Ryman Prize
A note from Gordy W Welcome to your spring edition of the Ryman Times after a very o long winter! I’d like to thank everyone for the warm welcome to the job. I’ve started a ‘meet Gordy’ tour around all the villages, saying hello to our residents and staff. If you see me in your neck of the woods, please don’t hesitate to say hi. A highlight since I took over the role was catching up with a big group of shareholders at our annual meeting at Charles Upham in Rangiora on July 27. As well as updating shareholders on our progress, we raised our concerns about the Government’s proposed changes to immigration settings. In a nutshell, the Government is looking at restricting skilled nurses and caregivers from overseas to three years only in New Zealand, after which they would need to have a one year stand down period. Many of you told us this was a concern, and we have been actively lobbying Government ministers and departments on your behalf. We did not think it is fair to existing staff, and we told them so. Regardless of the election result, we will continue campaigning for the right settings for our immigrant
staff. They are valued members of the Ryman family who have worked hard for our residents and families. As you can see from this issue of the Ryman Times there’s a lot going on. It was fantastic to be part of the blessing at our new village at Devonport, and the construction team is incredibly busy now with three new villages on the go in Auckland and one in Melbourne, as well as ongoing work at Bob Scott, Possum Bourne and Bert Sutcliffe. We’re busy innovating, and I think we can all be really proud of the myRyman and Assura systems developed with Ryman know-how. Professor Peter St George-Hyslop was a deserving winner of the Ryman Prize. He has dedicated a huge part of his life to Alzheimer’s research, and his more than 30 years of work has helped lay the foundations for therapies to combat the disease. It was fantastic to be able to recognise and celebrate his work. Our great partnership with the Royal New Zealand Ballet has continued with a hit season of Romeo and Juliet, and as you can see everyone loves an excuse to dress up the villages. I hope you enjoy your Ryman Times. Kind regards, Gordy
Ryman expansion gathers speed Ryman Healthcare has started work on its second Melbourne village and shareholders can expect more progress in the coming year as it ramps up its expansion plans in Victoria. Chairman Dr David Kerr told shareholders at the annual meeting at Charles Upham Retirement Village on July 27 that planning consents for new villages in Burwood East and Coburg had been lodged and work was under way at Brandon Park as the Melbourne expansion gathered pace. Ryman’s design team was also busy developing plans for new villages at Mt Eliza on the Mornington Peninsula, and Geelong. “Earthworks are under way at Brandon Park, and we had very positive public meetings to launch the village – with pre-sales already much stronger than anticipated,’’ Ryman Chief Executive Gordon MacLeod said. “We’ve found great acceptance of our terms in Australia since we opened at Wheelers Hill three years ago.’’ “We’re also about to get started on new villages at Devonport and Lynﬁeld in Auckland so we have a busy year ahead.’’ Dr Kerr told shareholders that demand at existing villages had been strong in the ﬁrst quarter, occupancy at established care centres was running at 97% and trading was in line with expectations. Development earnings would be heavily weighted
towards the back end of the second half, in line with the timing of the construction programme at Ryman’s developing villages. Growth in the ﬁrst half of the year would be limited as a result. Dr Kerr told shareholders that Immigration New Zealand’s proposed policy changes for skilled migrant workers had created uncertainty for many employees and Ryman had written to Ministers and met with them to express its concerns. “We have a lot of immigrant nurses and caregivers who have been in New Zealand for several years, serving our residents well, and they’ve told us they are worried about the changes. We have asked the Government to grandparent their skills and to provide a clearer pathway to residency. We want their hard work and commitment to our residents recognised. They deserve it.’’ Dr Kerr said the aged care industry was expecting a sharp increase in demand as the population rapidly ages.
The Ryman board at Charles Upham Village
Prime Minister Bill English with Professor Peter St George-Hyslop and Dr Naoko Muramatsu
Alzheimer’s researcher wins the Ryman Prize A world-renowned researcher has won the 2017 Ryman Prize in recognition of his more than 30 years of ground-breaking contribution to research into Alzheimer’s disease. Professor Peter St George-Hyslop, who splits his time between research labs at the Universities of Toronto in Canada and Cambridge in the United Kingdom, has won the 2017 Ryman Prize for his research into neuro-degenerative diseases. His research work has focused on discovering the key genes and proteins that cause cells to degenerate in diseases such as early onset Alzheimer’s disease. His work has also helped other researchers better understand other neuro-degenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s, motor neurone disease, and CreutzfeldtJakob (mad cow) disease. He was presented with the prize by the Right Honourable Bill English, Prime Minister of New Zealand, at a special presentation in Wellington on August 9. Ryman Prize juror Dr Naoko Muramatsu said Professor St George-Hyslop’s research had led to a much better understanding of neuro-degenerative diseases. “Since the mid-1980s he has carried out pioneering research in a ﬁeld which was little understood. Millions of people around the world have Alzheimer’s and Peter’s research has had a profound inﬂuence on its understanding, and the ability to diagnose and treat it. He thoroughly deserves this award for his many decades of commitment to scientiﬁc discovery, teaching, and sheer hard work.’’ “He has also been a proliﬁc research author, and his 390 published scientiﬁc papers have been cited by other researchers more than 33,000 times. This means that his discoveries have been widely disseminated to form the basis of other research and discoveries.’’ Professor St George-Hyslop said he was chuffed to win. “The prize came as a complete surprise - but one that is exceptionally exciting for two reasons. At a personal level, it is obviously thrilling to have one’s professional work and the work of one’s colleagues publicly recognised. However, there is a much larger
importance to this prize. It signiﬁes a sea-change in how society perceives disorders affecting the health and wellbeing of their older members. It signals a growing understanding of the urgency of getting to grips with these increasingly common, devastating conditions that impact not only those individuals affected by them, but also their family and their caregivers, and the state in which they live.’’ Gordon MacLeod said the aim of the prize was to encourage the best and brightest minds in the world to think about the health of older people. “We’re delighted to support the prize because it recognises the importance of this ﬁeld of healthcare. The world’s population is rapidly ageing, and people are living longer with chronic diseases. These issues have no borders – we want to do everything we can to help tackle what is a worldwide problem.’’
The Ryman Prize The Ryman Prize is a $250,000 international prize, which rewards the best work in the world that has enhanced quality of life for older people. It is the world’s richest prize of its type and was established to create the equivalent of a Nobel Prize for people working in the ﬁeld of the health of older people. The prize was launched in 2015 and the inaugural prize was won by Gabi Hollows, a founding director of The Fred Hollows Foundation. Gabi Hollows set up the charity with her late husband Professor Fred Hollows, and together they worked tirelessly to tackle the problem of preventable blindness in the developing world. In the 26 years since the Hollows Foundation was established more than 1 million people have had their sight restored. The 2016 prize was won by Professor Henry Brodaty. Professor Brodaty is a pioneer in diagnosis and treatment of Alzheimer’s and dementia and his inﬂuence has been felt around the world.
Ryman Times Brandon Park’s sales advisors Dale Singleton and Michelle Shaw
Brandon Park’s dynamic duo The planets certainly aligned well when the universe brought Brandon Park’s sales advisors Dale Singleton and Michelle Shaw to Ryman Healthcare. Both were looking for a career change when Ryman was launching its Weary Dunlop village in Melbourne and found the company ticked all the boxes. Dale had worked as a portrait and wedding photographer for 25 years and had noticed a downturn in business since the ownership of smartphones with good quality inbuilt cameras took off. Meanwhile, Michelle had spent two decades working in the legal industry trying her hand in various roles including accounts, legal secretary, executive assistant and most recently human resources. After a two-year stint in real estate, Dale saw an ad for Ryman: “I had no idea who they were but I thought it might be something different.” “The challenge was that it was such a big project,” says Dale, who ﬁrst saw the site when it was just a big hole in the ground. Having got the job, Dale was quickly impressed by the Ryman way of doing things. “I really like the professionalism of the company. The fact they built a beautiful village and that the residents come ﬁrst. I like that because you know you’re doing the right thing by them.” He adds: “Our terms and conditions are far superior to anyone in Victoria so they’re easy to sell.” A dad to two teenaged kids, Dale found the job ﬁtted nicely with family life. When he’s not working, Dale and his wife Kerrie enjoy eating out at nice restaurants, dinner parties and supporting their favourite teams, Carlton and Melbourne Victory. And fortunately for our residents, Dale still likes to take a few snaps on the camera at the village when he can.
Michelle initially applied to be group sales and community relations manager Debbie McClure’s PA, having been drawn to the company as it appealed to her values. “I wanted to work for a company where I felt we were giving back a little bit, and I was thinking healthcare or schools,” says Michelle, who quickly caught the sales bug and asked to switch roles! “It was great working with Debbie because I learned all the behind the scenes stuff and I loved helping at the open days.” “I just love that it’s a caring company. It’s all about our staff and it’s all about our residents and putting them ﬁrst.” While Michelle lives in Berwick with her husband Steve and their two children, she grew up in Wheelers Hill and had friends who went to the tech college previously on the site. In fact, like so many of the residents moving into Brandon Park, her parents built their house and lived there for 40 years, and have just downsized themselves, giving her ideal insight into the issues her clients are also facing. “A lot of people want to stay in the area where their friends and activities or even their doctors are,” she says. The thing she is looking forward to most is seeing the village come along bit by bit and watching a hole in the ground turn into bricks and mortar. “Then we’ll be watching them move in, it’s going to be so exciting,” she says. “I just want to achieve a happy village. I love interacting with the residents when they come in and I love making their dreams come true, and helping them ﬁnd the perfect space where they can spend the rest of their lives.”
Heart Foundation Australia’s acting fundraising director Lisa Westphal with Weary Dunlop’s manager Chris Barnett and residents (left to right) Pat Gleeson, Russell Garnsworthy, Rita Watson and Tom Myors
Charity delighted by donation Kind-hearted residents joined Weary Dunlop Manager Chris Barnett in donating an impressive $7,400 cheque to Ryman Healthcare’s charity partner, Heart Foundation Australia last week. The money was raised over the past year through gold coin donations and rafﬂes held at the village’s happy hour session each week. The 300-plus residents collected $3,700 which was then matched by Ryman to make a total of $7,400. “We’re very proud to present this cheque for $7,400 to the Heart Foundation and thrilled to help support the great work that they do,” Chris said. “Heart health has been a popular cause amongst our residents and it’s been a record year for fundraising for Ryman.” “Our amazing residents here at Weary Dunlop have generously donated at our weekly Happy Hour
get-togethers all through the past year and we’re stoked to have raised such an impressive amount.” Heart Foundation acting fundraising director, Lisa Westphal, said she was delighted to accept the donation from the Weary Dunlop Retirement Village. “Generous donations such as this one help us to fund world-class cardiovascular research, deliver health and public education programs and make a difference to the heart health of people living in our communities,” Lisa said. “Heart disease affects two out of three families in Australia and it does not discriminate – affecting men and women, young and old. But, we can all make lifestyle changes to improve our heart health, and it’s never too late to get started.” The amount comes on top of the $330,000 raised by Ryman’s Kiwi villages, which was recently presented to the Heart Foundation in New Zealand.
Birkenhead project manager Matt Hutchinson proudly shows off his swipe system
Pak’nSave epiphany beneﬁts company An epiphany in Pak’nSave while grocery shopping has led to the introduction of a new swipe inand-out system for Ryman construction workers that is now being rolled out company-wide. Birkenhead project manager Matt Hutchinson said he had ‘a moment’ when he spotted supermarket staff scanning barcodes for stocktakes. “I had been working on a system for some time to monitor the distribution of our tools from the tool shed to our workers,” says Matt. “When I saw the stocktake person at the supermarket I thought if we barcoded our tools and then logged our people we could match the two and limit the losses.” After discussing the idea with Birkenhead’s structure foreman Ricky Ciobanu, it turned out Ricky’s brother Chris had the answer. In a matter of days, the self-taught IT whiz came up with a program and, using a RFID (radio frequency identiﬁcation) scanner and some tags bought off the internet, they were away. “This has proved to be an awesome system and our losses, while not eliminated, are now so low it is hard to ﬁnd the evidence of missing gear,” says Matt. The next logical step was to ask Chris to come up with a sign in-and-out system for workers which has also produced incredible efﬁciencies. “It creates an electronic timesheet from the signing in and out, and after some minor adjustments I check the printout, sign it off and submit it to the pay ofﬁce at the end of every week.’’ “The timesheet processing went from over a day’s job to an hour’s job overnight,” says Matt. These two examples of Kiwi ingenuity were quickly
recognised for their broader potential by Ryman health and safety manager Matt Poskitt. He was working on a new company-wide health and safety system, and recruited software company Assura to work on a new and improved version of the Birkenhead swipe system to be rolled out across all sites. “This is a perfect example of one of our sites coming up with a great idea which has been really good to expand on for the whole company,” says Matt Poskitt. The beneﬁts are multiple, he says. “We have 2,700 suppliers in the Assura system so there can be hundreds of contractors on site all signing on to various sign-in books. Trying to get all that information together just for an evacuation drill takes a lot of time, and accuracy was never guaranteed.” “Now, when people swipe their tag it shows what time they signed in or out, so we can quickly see who’s there. And just as importantly, we know they’ve all been inducted.” Assura provides an accurate record of hours worked, and is a great way to corroborate invoices coming in from various agencies and contractors. This gives the sites true visibility of what they’re paying for, and the ability to match it up against what they’re getting, Matt says. The tags people are issued will work on any Ryman construction site. But if you’re not inducted on that site, it will play an error sound and pop up with an alert that you need to have a safety induction. So sites are safer, equipment is tracked, records are more accurate and it is a home-grown system that works for Ryman. Not bad for a visit to the supermarket.
Gordon MacLeod and Dave Sevilleno
Dave, Amor, Caleb and Sha undrei Sevilleno at their citizenship ceremony with Christchurch Mayor Lian ne Dalziel
Speaking up for overseas workers Dave Sevilleno has had a busy few months. Just as he was preparing to celebrate a signiﬁcant personal milestone – becoming a New Zealand citizen nine years after he arrived in New Zealand – he shot to national prominence as a spokesman for the migrant community on New Zealand’s biggest news website – Stuff.co.nz. Dave spoke out about his concerns around proposed changes to New Zealand’s immigration settings. The changes, which included a one year stand down for staff who had been in New Zealand for three years, were concerning his team, and might put off other immigrant workers coming to New Zealand. Dave was speaking from experience. His story provides a great insight into how much immigrant workers have to offer New Zealand. When Dave arrived back in 2008 he spent three months living in a run down one-bedroom unit with up to nine other workers from the Philippines. A qualiﬁed nurse back in the Philippines, Dave took a bus around Christchurch knocking on doors to try and ﬁnd a job, and was getting increasingly worried about his future. “I was desperate to get a job. I went everywhere to knock on doors and drop in my CV. And then my friend phoned to say she’d taken a job, but she knew there was one going at Anthony Wilding. I was interviewed and I got the job. It was pure luck.’’ Fast forward to 2017 and Dave runs the special care unit at Diana Isaac, where he oversees the care of 40 residents and manages 35 staff. Liz Dilger, the Ryman Healthcare village manager who interviewed Dave back in 2008, says there is nothing lucky about Dave’s success as a nurse.
From the start, Dave was a bright, willing and impressive candidate whose hard work and skill have got him where he is today, Liz says. And people like Dave do not grow on trees. Roles are hard to ﬁll and immigrant workers will always be needed to ﬁll the gap. Dave told Stuff that the Government’s planned changes would put off people like him from choosing to come to New Zealand. He says nurses and caregivers grow very attached to their residents, who thrive on consistency. This is also very important to families of people in care. While anyone could do the tasks required to be a caregiver, “not everybody has the heart to care,’’ Dave says. “Being a caregiver, experience-wise, we have to upskill ourselves and after three years we’re probably going to become a senior caregiver – we’ve done all the training. “What will be our incentive, if we’re going to be sent home for a year? I would go back to be honest.’’ Gordon MacLeod told Stuff Ryman was concerned about immigration policy because it took a lot of time to train staff, and worried migrants would not apply for jobs if they knew they would be sent home later. “Standing down for a year is essentially just having to go permanently. That’s the reality,’’ Gordon said. Dave said word soon got out internationally about prospects in different countries, and New Zealand was likely to lose great workers to places such as Canada. Dave got a lot of feedback from the Philippines about the article, and a lot of positive comments on social media for putting the case for immigrants.
Ryman Times Alec Grainger and Alphine Tronzon from Margaret Stoddart, one of Ryman’s ﬁrst villages in New Zealand
Ryman makes world top 10 Boston Consulting Group (BCG) has ranked Ryman Healthcare in the top 10 best performing healthcare companies in the world. Ryman was ranked eighth in the list of the world’s best performing healthcare companies, with an average annual total shareholder return of 26.8 per cent over the past ﬁve years. The BCG’s 2017 Value Creators Report rankings were compiled after researching shareholder returns at 2,350 global companies across 32 sectors over the ﬁve years from 2012 to December 31, 2016. Ryman was the only New Zealand company to make the list. BCG has been tracking value creation among global large cap companies for 19 years and Ryman has been in its healthcare top 10 since 2013. Gordon MacLeod said it was a tough list to make, and inclusion was a signiﬁcant achievement. “We are delighted to be included because it is one of the most robust surveys of company performance in the world. To be included on a list that includes the best performing companies around the globe is something to be proud of – and it reﬂects a lot of hard work by many people over a number of years.” While there has been signiﬁcant turnover in the list over this time, there is also an elite group of consistent outperformers – companies that have delivered outstanding value creation over a sustained period. “Ryman’s inclusion since 2013 shows that we have been performing at a consistently high level over a long period, and that is no mean feat,” Gordon MacLeod said. Ryman Healthcare’s long-term performance has been underpinned by strong growth in the company’s underlying earnings which have averaged 16% per
annum over the past 10 years. IFRS proﬁts have grown by 20% per annum over the same period. Over this time, Ryman’s dividend has increased more than 16-fold from 1.04 cents per share to 17.8 cents per share. This means an investor who purchased shares in Ryman Healthcare when the company ﬁrst listed is now enjoying an annual yield of more than 65% on their original purchase price. The total shareholder return measure used by BCG is the most comprehensive metric for measuring a company’s shareholder value creation performance and measures a combination of share price gains and dividend yield. The length of analysis used by the authors of the report means it is in part capturing the long-term capital decisions made by management rather than simply short-term share price movements that may be driven by market sentiment or news ﬂow. Gordon said Ryman has always taken a long-term view and had reinvested more than $2.6 billion in its portfolio since 1999 to fuel future growth and would continue to expand in high value markets like Auckland. “When we listed back in 1999 the intention was to build the company for the rapid growth in the population aged 75+ from 2018 onwards. Since then we’ve kept true to that vision, and we are now beginning to see the growth in the market we’ve spent so long preparing for.” One of those long-term decisions was Ryman Healthcare’s entry into Victoria – which is larger than the New Zealand market. Ryman opened its ﬁrst village in Melbourne in 2014 and since then it has bought another ﬁve development sites in Victoria.
The 100 club: Ben Oakes, Lorna Mofﬁt, Mary Powell, Lorna Jarret and Max Sladen
500 years in one room It was a big day for Mary Powell of Ernest Rutherford village when she celebrated her 100th birthday on August 7. That’s a major accomplishment for anyone but at the Nelson village Mary’s joining a growing 100 plus club! The village now sports ﬁve centenarians, including; Ben Oakes, Lorna Mofﬁt, Lorna Jarret, Max Sladen and now Mary. The group gathered in the village lounge to welcome Mary to “the club” and wish her a happy birthday. Mary grew up on the West Coast of the South Island in the small town of Charleston. She had seven siblings. “We had a free and easy time. We lived across the road from the beach – our playground was the beach and we climbed the rocks like goats,” she said. Her husband, Alex was a childhood sweetheart. A friend of her brother’s, she married him in Westport in 1939, the day before war was declared. Growing up she loved the dances in Barrytown. She wasn’t very interested in the goings on of war. “I don’t believe in wars. I think they are terrible.” She remembers Sir Walter Nash as Prime Minister of New Zealand. Her son Lex said she was very politically minded. “In her younger days, you should have seen her take on politicians who knocked on the door!” Mary positively glows with health and her hair shines like her pearls. Lex said she has never taken an antibiotic or a blood pressure pill in her life. “She is a herbalist – if you can make it out of garlic and rhubarb, she will. A farm lady.” Sewing and cooking were standard for everyone in those days, Mary says. About ﬁve tins a week were ﬁlled with biscuits and cakes and Mary made all her children’s clothes.
There were about 50 to 60 family members who visited Mary to celebrate. “I’m very fortunate with a lovely family and I had a husband who cared for me for 68 years.” Her secret to reaching the milestone? “Being contented and satisﬁed with what I’ve got,” she says. And advice from the other centenarians for a new club member? “Spend as much time as you can with your family,” said Lorna Mofﬁtt. Village manager, Durham Quigley, said all the staff knew about the birthday and made a special effort to call in and offer Mary birthday greetings. And why has Nelson got such a large club membership? He thinks it’s possibly Nelson’s temperate climate and relaxed lifestyle that plays a part in the number of centenarians in the village, but he says without a doubt the exceptional and tender care they receive in the village is a major contributor. Mary Powell with her son Lex and his wife
Bruce McLaren’s sister, Jan McLaren, and artist Craig Primrose unveiled the painting
Bruce McLaren immortalised at village More than 200 residents and visitors packed the village centre at the Bruce McLaren Retirement Village on August 11 to witness the unveiling of an oil painting of the village’s namesake, Bruce McLaren. Bruce’s sister Jan McLaren, who runs the Bruce McLaren Trust, unveiled the painting by Auckland painter Craig Primrose QSM, following an introduction by Ryman Healthcare’s corporate affairs manager David King. The occasion was made all the more special by the presence of a McLaren road car and an original 1970 single seater McLaren. Its owner Aucklander Dave Mitchell gave everyone a real thrill when he ﬁred up the engine a couple of times. The painting was commissioned by Ryman Healthcare and is the ﬁrst of a series of paintings of each village’s namesake to be undertaken by Craig, who plans to complete four a year. David King said Ryman was delighted to be able to honour Bruce McLaren in this unique way, and said it was ﬁtting that the tribute came in the month that Bruce would have turned 80. “The impact that Bruce McLaren had on international motorsport was huge and long lasting,” he said. “We are delighted to see the beautiful work that Craig has created and believe it will help preserve this incredible legacy for the beneﬁt of our residents for many generations to come.” Jan McLaren was also thrilled with the painting of her brother and said the artwork, combined with the attention created by the movie McLaren, released earlier this year, had had a huge impact on regenerating interest in Bruce’s story. “It really is a privilege for me to be involved with preserving his legacy, not just for our generation but for the younger generations coming up too,” she said. “The Bruce McLaren Trust has had a long relationship
with Craig and I really love the artwork he has produced, it is a wonderful tribute to a great man.” Craig has had a long career painting many superstars of the sporting world and was the preferred artist of another New Zealand legend and Ryman village namesake, Sir Edmund Hillary. His connection with Ryman came about through co-founder and director Kevin Hickman and before that when his parents both retired to the Edmund Hillary village. Craig said the hardest part was portraying the cars, with the painting taking around two months to ﬁnish. “There was a lot of research into the cars themselves. We speciﬁcally tried to bring the cars from Formula 1 and the CanAm cars which he and Denny Hulme had great success in.” Craig said he was delighted to be involved with Ryman. “I’m very excited to be embarking on this project, it’s a real celebration for well-known New Zealanders. “It’s a great investment that Ryman is making because these portraits will be able to hang in the villages for the next 300 years. They will outlast all of us!” McLaren fan Dave Mitchell with Jan and Craig
Ryman Times Rita Angus residents, Nancy Hart and Dorothy Bilderbeck with their craftwork
Rita's residents to the rescue Rita Angus residents and charity Given for You have teamed up to make a big difference to a whole lot of lives. Given for You is a charitable trust aimed at offering a helping hand to vulnerable Wellington families and individuals living below the poverty line without sufﬁcient resources in terms of the basic needs for survival. The trust has been operating in Wellington since October last year. It fundraises and seeks donations and services to supply vulnerable families with family care packages, children's birthday bags and swimming kits for children at low decile schools. Ryman Healthcare has made a substantial donation to the trust to help support families in need and the residents at Rita Angus village in Kilbirnie have stepped up to lend a creative hand. They've knitted and crotcheted beanies of all shapes and sizes, and hand-sewn and decorated felt hearts which will be infused with lavender oil to place in care packs. Sandy Baigent, the chair of the trust, appreciates there are lots of people doing excellent work in the community to help those less fortunate, but, she says, there are still gaps for some families who struggle on a daily basis. "If you need help we are here to help and we've got these great people who help us identify those in need," says Sandy. "Help is given on a no questions asked basis."
The Ryman donation is sufﬁcient to supply one entire swimming syndicate with 200 swim kits in a Wellington school. The swim kits include, bag with name tag, goggles, swimsuit and beach towel. Every child in the school receives a bag, so no child is singled out as being in need of charity. Trustee Sarah Singleton said the trust met with social workers and were told many children don't go to school on swim day because even though the lessons are funded, they don't have the gear. "They not only miss the swimming, but also a day at school." The psychology behind the birthday packs, says Sandy, is the importance of celebrations. "Many families don't have much to celebrate and birthdays are a special day for children – a day just for them when they can celebrate and invite friends. We get wonderful, positive feedback from something as simple as that." The packs contain a ready-to-make cake mix, reusable cake tin, candles and decorations, balloons, party plates and lolly bags for 10 children. The family care packs are distributed in a handy ﬂexi bucket and contain everything a family needs to be clean: towels, facecloths, bathmat, hairbrushes, hair ties and combs. Giant sized shampoo and conditioner, nail clippers, soap and deodorant, sanitary items and shaving gear are also provided.
Ryman chief executive Gordon MacLeod greets Ngati ¯ ¯ ¯ Whatua o Orakei elders Matt Maihi and Bob Hawke ¯
Blessings mark the start of new villages ¯ ¯ ¯ Whatua ¯ Ngati o Orakei elders have blessed the sites of Ryman Healthcare’s newest retirement villages in Auckland. ¯ ¯ Ngati o Orakei kaumatua Bob Hawke and Matt ¯ Whatua ¯ Maihi performed a karakia on the Ngataringa Rd site set against a backdrop of magniﬁcent views of Devonport’s Mt Victoria and Auckland city in August. Matt and his daughter Monique Pihema performed a blessing at the 8.9 ha Tropicana site in Lynﬁeld in June. Matt Maihi said the blessings acknowledged the people who had come before as well as preparing and protecting the way for those who would work on the construction of the villages. “The karakia is our way of safeguarding the wellbeing of the workers, the wellbeing of the local people who are here and also our way of giving our support to our whenua and also to our community,” Matt said. “It’s the wellbeing of the community that’s important. The people who are going into the village to be well looked after by Ryman are from our community, they’re our families, our friends, our grandads and grannies. ¯ Whatua ¯ “At Ngati we see this as an important value to our community.” ¯ Gordon MacLeod thanked the kaumatua from Ngati ¯ ¯ ¯ Whatua o Orakei for their blessing and said it was humbling to acknowledge their history and people. “As a proudly New Zealand company, and as a company that builds communities, we want to acknowledge the local communities of the places where we establish our retirement villages.” “This is an important step for us in developing an even stronger relationship in this area with the ﬁrst communities from here, the Tangata Whenua.”
Gordon MacLeod also made a pledge to the kaumatua. “We know this land is important to you, and our promise is to look after it for you.” “We see it as our privilege to be able to look after the older people of this area.”
Devonport Peninsula Precincts Society spokesman Iain Rea shares a hongi with Matt Maihi
Published on Sep 13, 2017