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Waimarino Development Takes a Step Forward

7 May 2024


Waimarino Wellness Centre


The Waimarino Wellness Centre development has reached a new and long-awaited outcome with Te Whatu Ora confirming they have secured an architect, and a project group has been formed to monitor and lead the progress of refurbishment of the existing Waimarino Health Centre in Seddon Street, Raetihi.


This centre will be the hub for the Waimarino community, bringing together local health and social service providers working across the communities of Raetihi and Ohakune. Some of the providers will be located within the centre and others will deliver their services on a casual basis when it fits for the sort of services they are offering. The objective of providing an integrated service and ‘one-stop-shop’ is to ensure whānau don’t have to repeat their story to many providers who are not connected and not working together on their behalf.


Reviewing a model of care that has the entire team focused on delivering outcomes for whānau as one connected team is the aim. Also, there is a real desire to focus on what’s important to whānau, rather than what’s important to providers. This will take some change and korero to move the workforces’ thinking, but Honey Winter, co-chair of the Waimarino Development group with Andrew McKinnon says, “The team are up for it and focused on doing things better by working alongside whānau.”


In order for solid and effective communication with the community and local stakeholders, Lou Brider has been contracted as the Programme Lead for the Waimarino Development. Lou’s role will be to interface with the community, Iwi and stakeholder groups. “I’m really looking forward to fulfilling the aspirations of our community,” says Lou. Her background in banking and business management, and more recently working for the local Iwi Uenuku as a senior manager, has her well placed to take on the challenges of this role.


Honey is excited to have a project lead onboard. “Lou carries all the skills for this role and has a strong relationship in the community,” says Honey. “It is pleasing to see the programme of work coming together and we are now back on track to progress this development.”


It is expected that once the architect is on the ground, he will join Lou in reviewing some of the whānau voice work that has already been published and revisiting conversations so that the concept plan and ideas will be progressed in partnership with the community. The Waimarino Development group recognise that the budget is tight but are optimistic that outcomes can be improved which the community will notice and value.




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