A welcome service for new residents has been created by chaplain Ann Jennison and the recreation team at Kōwhainui Home using digital resources such as PowerPoint, songs available on YouTube, and photographs.
The service can be personalised to include the names and life stories of the new residents and any blessings or cultural aspects that are important to them.
Ann doesn’t follow a particular belief system or religion, instead she focusses on human needs of self-esteem, love and belonging.
“To be a spiritual person you don’t need to be religious,” she says. “And the flexibility of the service provides us with the ability to make each new resident feel like they belong in their new home right from the start.”
New residents’ families and loved ones are also included in the welcome service, which reflects Kōwhainui Home’s holistic approach to elder care, Ann says.
Ann’s BA in education and contemporary religion and work with the Sisters of Joseph at the Nazareth Rest Home has given her a deep understanding of elders’ spiritual needs.
She is also a firm believer in Enliven’s philosophy of care, which follows the Eden Alternative.
“The 10 principles of care promote positive aging by addressing loneliness and helplessness and providing opportunities for companionship, meaningful activity and fun – which is the longer-term focus for residents,” she says with a smile.
Other Kōwhainui Home services throughout the year include memorials, worship services and celebrations, which families and friends are always invited to attend.