A newly formed Kaumātua or elders group plan to share kai together once a month at Enliven’s Kowhainui Home.
The club has eight members who recently prepped, cooked and feasted on their boil up of bacon bones, watercress, potatoes, kumara, carrots, pumpkin and doughboys, topped off with a refreshing, palate-cleansing shandy.
“It was a very social family-focused event with lots of memories flowing, most related to whānau, nannies and koros. The food was shared by Kowhainui Home whānau, staff and residents,” says Kowhainui Home manager Trish Boswell.
Next on the menu will be a hangi to celebrate Matariki in June. Chicken, pork, mutton, vegetables and stuffing will be steamed and served in the traditional way. The group of Kaumātua will also bless the kai with a karakia that all staff can learn to say in future.
Team leader diversional therapy Frances Craven says the Kaumātua initiative is welcomed by residents and their whānau, as well as staff.
“Wise leadership and decision making is in the hands of the elders and those closest to them and ensures Māori culture is part of every day at Kowhainui Home,” says Frances.
As well as embracing Māori culture the initiative feeds into Enliven’s philosophy of care, aligned with the Eden Alternative principles of choice and control, growth and development, which help create a thriving elder-centred community.