We believe everybody
deserves to enjoy life,
whatever their age

Aged care for life
Hayley McKean chatting with a resident at Coombrae Home
Hayley McKean chatting with a resident at Coombrae Home

A Manawatu nurse wants to bust the myth that aged care is where nurses go to retire.

Hayley McKean, Care Manager at Enliven’s Coombrae Home in Feilding, loves her job and wants to encourage more nurses to consider a rewarding career like hers. Yet, casting her mind back to her teenage years, Hayley agrees her opinions have changed.

“If you’d asked me as a teen whether I wanted to be a nurse in a rest home, I would probably have laughed,” says Hayley. “Back then I thought that the older generations were old and boring!”

But a placement in an age care facility when she was 16 helped Hayley realise how wrong she was.

“I was dreading the placement but then I ended up absolutely loving it!” says Hayley.
That was 18 years ago, and Hayley has never looked back. After completing 13 years as a caregiver, Hayley decided to further her skills and study for her nursing degree. For three years she studied towards her degree alongside working as a caregiver at Enliven’s Brightwater Home in Palmerston North. Then, in 2009 she graduated and became a Registered Nurse.

“I loved being a nurse at Brightwater Home,” recalls Hayley. “I wish I could truly describe how rewarding it is. Our elders have so much to give and we can learn a lot from them. They have amazing stories and they’re definitely not old and boring! More Registered Nurses should give it a go.”

In 2010 Hayley decided to take another step on the aged care career ladder, and became Care Manager at Enliven’s Coombrae Home in Fielding.

“My role is hugely varied,” says Hayley. “There’s no time to get bored. Of course, I’m responsible for the elders health, I support the nurses and the resident’s families, but I think the most important aspect is focusing on our elders wellbeing; making sure they are happy and fulfilled.”

If you’re a nurse in the Manawatu region who is looking for an exciting new career option, Enliven would love to hear from you. Visit www.psc.org.nz for current vacancies or email your CV and cover letter to recruit@psc.org.nz.

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