Linda Lankshear is Recreation Team Leader at Cashmere Home and Cashmere Heights Home, both in Johnsonville.
She says much of the job is focused around coming up with new and different activities to involve the homes’ residents in, and allowing for them to be enjoyable for people with a range of abilities.
Linda had a few craft-related hobbies growing up – a skill which she has found to be worthwhile in this role.
“My parents were always crafty, and we did a lot of sewing and knitting growing up,” she says.
“I do enjoy the creative aspect of this job, especially when we have events. It’s so much fun to involve the residents in making things – it’s really neat when you can open their worlds.”
Linda initially started working with Enliven as a casual recreation officer at Longview Home. She then moved to the recreation team at Woburn Home in Lower Hutt before her current position became available at Enliven’s Johnsonville homes in early 2019.
Linda says a previous role teaching aqua fit classes helped her realise how much she enjoyed helping elders.
While at Woburn Home, Linda established the annual Wearable Arts event, which has remained a highlight on the home’s events calendar since she left.
Linda says you need to have a good sense of humour to enjoy working in a role like hers. You also need good organisation skills and the ability to be flexible with any plans.
But the most important thing? “You have to have a passion for it.”