Ryman Community News

Ryman news Community news Rita Angus

Patience and support eases lockdown anxiety

Written by Margot Boock
on June 11, 2020

Jenny spent the days immediately before Level 4 lockdown helping to move her 104-year old mother from her serviced apartment at Rita Angus, to the village care centre.

Jenny and Margaret are both residents of the village, Margaret moved into her serviced apartment in 2002 not long after the village opened, and Jenny, knowing the village so well joined her four years ago.

Lockdown came quickly and Jenny compared Rita Angus to a safely distanced Paddington Station. Lots of questions were asked and Village Manager Rob and his staff fielded them with patience and support.

Jenny said, “My first challenge was how to keep up the same exercise level!”

She chose to walk up and down the stairs for 20 minutes each morning and strolled around the village grounds enjoying the fresh air.

Jenny adapted well to her new lifestyle and like others she grew to appreciate the gift of freedom lockdown offered. “I loved having the time to talk to other residents from a safe distance on our walks around the garden.

“We suddenly had a whole lot less responsibility.

“Our delicious meals were delivered to our rooms – a mammoth task for the staff who, as usual, cared for us magnificently.

“Thank goodness for the telephone (and for me the computer). I was able to reach out and encourage others and allow myself to be encouraged by my awesome
family - as news of the pandemic splashed across our television screens.

“We were regularly updated with the Ryman plans to protect us from the
virus, which was very helpful.

“Throughout this time, I have felt a tremendous sense of privilege. That awareness also brings a deep sadness for those less privileged - those living in lonely bubbles, worried about their own health.

“I remain in awe of Rob our manager, the staff and cheerful resident volunteers who worked long hours to make life safe and pleasurable for us. You are
indeed our heroes.

“May we learn to be satisfied; patiently encourage others and never be too busy to smile.”

Like many residents in Ryman Healthcare villages, Jenny has shown resilience
and understanding during this challenging period.

At a time when residents in aged care were most vulnerable Ryman Healthcare responded quickly.

The aim was to keep COVID-19 out and protect all residents in care who were most vulnerable to the virus and create safe havens for residents by making sure they had everything they needed without having to leave while the Level 4 lockdown was in place.

They ensured residents could stay home by providing deliveries of essential items.
‘Happy Hour in a Bag’ was always popular and was often accompanied with
extra treats.

Ryman delivered 9,000 Bidfood grocery orders and 56,000 ‘Happy Hour
in a Bag’ packages over seven weeks.

Ryman rolled out Zoom to more than 3,800 devices connecting thousands of families in this way. They also delivered 70 new devices to each village to
be used by serviced apartment residents.

Along with providing fitness classes and games for residents (at a distance
and online), Ryman continued to communicate with residents and families
by email, delivering newsletters and keeping their website updated on
the latest announcements.

As well as caring for the residents’ physical needs Ryman conducted welfare check calls and arranged counselling for anyone struggling.

As the restrictions ease, the community is buzzing: new residents are excited to move into the village and others, who have found this time particularly trying, have decided to join the village to experience the security
and care Jenny speaks of so highly.

Sales advisor Lynda welcomes your call to arrange an appointment for
you and a family member to tour the village, view the available serviced apartments and discuss your retirement options. You can also find a raft of information
at rymanhealthcare.co.nz.

About Ryman Healthcare:

Ryman was founded in 1984 and has become one of New Zealand’s largest listed companies. The company owns and operates 45 retirement villages in New Zealand and Australia which are home to more than 13,200 residents and the company employs 6,700 team members.

Media advisory: For further information, photos, interviews or comment please contact Corporate Affairs Manager David King on 03 366 4069 or 021 499 602 or Communications Advisor Maryvonne Gray on 027 552 0767.

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