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whatever their age

Enliven’s Vacation Club
Huntleigh Home Recreation Office Gwen Esler with Chalmers Home residents in Wellington.

Enliven’s new Vacation Club has had unexpected consequences, and they’re all positive.

The inaugural Vacation Club trip in March 2015 saw residents of Chalmers Home in New Plymouth travelling to Huntleigh Home in Wellington for a week-long getaway, while Huntleigh Home residents soaked up the sun in Taranaki.

Huntleigh recreation officer Gwen Esler says the Vacation Club trip was initially about supporting residents to be able to take a holiday, something most of them thought they wouldn’t have the chance to do again.

She says the elders all returned from the holiday with stories of new experiences, new places and new people. Some even saw relatives they hadn’t seen in years.

“It’s was just lovely witnessing people reconnect with people they wouldn’t normally be able to see and we’re happy we were able to help make it happen.”

For Huntleigh Home resident Pamela Lubransky, the Vacation Club gave her a unique opportunity to reunite with her son and meet her great granddaughter for the first time.

“It’s great that she could come here [to New Plymouth] for a trip,” says Pamela’s son Steve.

“She had a great time seeing all of the sights and travelling along the coastal walkway in a buggy and we were able to take her out for the afternoon and evening.”

Steve says without the Vacation Club it wouldn’t have been easy for his mum to visit him in New Plymouth.

“Travelling with Enliven means she’s well looked after, and once we had taken her out she was able to return to the professional and friendly care at Chalmers where she was able to enjoy the panoramic view of the Tasman sea and the Taranaki coast with a nice cup of tea.”

Another Vacation Club member, Fay Arbuckle, was also surprised by a special visit from a relative.

Fay’s sister-in-law drove from Gisborne to meet her at the Enliven’s Kowhainui Home in Whanganui where the club stopped for lunch.

“We hadn’t seen each other in a few years so it was just lovely,” says Fay.

Enliven’s Vacation Club relies on the support and generosity of families and the community to continue. If you’d like to support the Enliven Vacation Club please call us on 0508 TO HELP to make a donation or click here to make a donation using our secure online form.

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