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Dear Prime Minister

November 21, 2018 November 2018 No Comments

The following  letter was sent by the residents of Wharekaka Rest Home to the Prime Minister, Minster of Health and three  Wairarapa members of parliament. 

October 1 2018

Honourable Prime Minister Ms Jacinda Adern

Dear  Jacinda,

We are the Residents of the Wharekaka Rest Home in Martinborough, South  Wairarapa.  Our home is ‘special’ as it is a small, community home efficiently run by a dedicated Trust Board, reinforced by an active Auxilliary group, and well supported by countless community members.  

It was with great pleasure that we were told of last year’s increase of wages for our carers who certainly go ‘above and beyond’ what anyone could expect in their care for us.  They become our friends and we rely on them heavily in these later years of our lives.  Thank you for realizing their worth to us and, at last, giving them pay equity.

May we share with you the importance of Wharekaka to us: 

Because it is a small ‘not-for-profit’ organization we are treated as important members of a slightly larger family than the norm.  We know each other well, are physically and socially catered for, and share our lives as a ‘family’ being able to voice our opinions in matters that concern our welfare and happiness: we are treated as family members.  

       With Wharekaka being so central to Martinborough, moving into residence here has enabled us to remain close to our former homes and within easy visiting distance of, and for, our family members and friends.  We remain a part of the community but are cared for as we need to be in a suitable facility.  Wharekaka provides our township and rural community with this wonderful asset.

     Our location enables us to participate in all local functions if we so wish.  Our Activities Officer ensures we are within the community wherever possible and we feel we still belong to Martinborough, that we are useful members of our society.  We are also close enough for a large number of groups to visit us regularly.

     We have had many interactions with our local Council (through our Residents’ Advocate) and much has been carried out by them to enable our easier access to the township, hence assisting us to be fully interactive in our community. 

Through our meetings we are kept informed of all important issues that relate to our home.  Although you, as Government Representatives, made the move to pay equity (which we applaud) we believe that the funding provided by you did not fully cover this increase in wages and, as a result, Wharekaka (being such a small organization) is struggling financially even further to be able to keep within budget.  Poor funding is a real burden in our home.  Larger organizations have more financial leeway to accommodate such increases as their financial pool is so much bigger.  

        Our small home is vital to us and to our community – as it may be in many areas where small homes operate.  It would be devastating for us if Wharekaka was unable to cope financially and had to close.  We are requesting that you realize the difference between the vulnerable, intimate homes – especially run as Trusts – and the massive, money-making complexes when it comes to providing funding.  Please fight for us by increasing government funding to fully meet all personel wages in our small, intimate and precious homes. 

We do not want to be left here in Martinborough without this valued asset for us, the elderly. 

On behalf of Wharekaka Residents,

Patricia Hill,   Residents’ Advocate.  

The letter is signed by Patricia Hill and eighteen Wharekaka Villa & Rest Home Residents  

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