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The Ruamahunga Health Trust is 15 years old!

December 9, 2019 December 2019 No Comments

In 2005, the Ruamahunga Health Trust was established and registered as an incorporated society.  It has eight trustees.  Six of the trustees are original members.  Five have retired from the Trust over the years and this year we welcome two new Trustees; Paula Jackson and Cynthia Maling.  Cynthia has had a long and successful career in the health sector.  Paula’s career has been in business, where she currently resides on several boards and has considerable marketing experience.

The main roles of the Trust are to maintain the Martinborough Health Centre to a high standard, to support the work of the health professionals, and in particular, to promote and support quality health services in the South Wairarapa.

How did the Trust begin?

Back in 2003, Martinborough was a rural town without a doctor.  Pete Morrison had moved to Waiouru and it was becoming increasingly difficult to attract a new doctor to the district, particularly as the medical centre was old, outdated and not fit for purpose.  

Early in 2004 a small working group was formed and the idea of building a new facility owned by the community was floated. Meanwhile, Joan Gibson and Noeline White collected hundreds of signatures to petition the PHO.   A year later following public meetings the Ruamahunga Health Trust was formed. The Lions Club kindly offered to lease land to the Trust on which to build a new medical centre and fund raising began.  

Over the next two years a huge community effort was put into fund raising.  There were balls, golf tournaments, long lunches, bike rides, fashion shows, host dinners, cinema nights, BBQs, art auctions, stalls at fairs and so on.  Over $400,000 was raised by the community and with financial support from several funding agencies, plans for a new medical centre were able to be finalised in early 2007.  Shane Hartnell was chosen as the preferred builder.   

Costing $600,000, the new centre, which was built in just six months and under budget, was opened in January 2008.  It is leased to the medical practice and the pharmacy.  The Trust uses this income for maintenance of the building and occasionally the purchase of new equipment for the medical centre.

The Trust has since created extra consulting rooms along the Oxford Street side and three years ago had major alterations done at both ends of the building to provide better access for the ambulance, a new entrance, repositioning of clinical space and room for our new pharmacy. 

We are so fortunate and privileged to have this facility which provides a home for our high quality medical practice and an efficient pharmacy on-site.

Ro Griffiths

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