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The Selwyn Foundation provides care and support to elders in their community

Senior Community Care Services

Providing care and support to elders in their community.

The provision of locally-based services is a key part of Selwyn's wider community care strategy, which includes enabling older New Zealanders to live independently in their own homes through access to quality support. In 2014, the Foundation considered how it might develop its community outreach further to provide for the broader spectrum of age-related care needs and, thus, help as many people as possible within their local environment.

The work of local 'navigators' in helping older adults access the social and health services they need to maintain their wellbeing and independence is an important component of our community care strategy. As part of its charitable mission, Selwyn part-funds the seniors community worker with Whangarei Anglican Care Trust and also provides grants to the Maori Bishopric, Te Píhopatanga o Te Tai Tokerau, enabling the Pou Àwhina Kaumátua Kuia team to carry out pastoral care ministry to kaumátua and kuia throughout the region.

In South Auckland, our community liaison nurse advises Selwyn Centre coordinators on health issues concerning guests attending the Centres and conducts home visits to assess individual health needs, liaising on guests' behalf with other health professional, as necessary. Other examples of navigators supported by Selwyn are the Faith Community Nurses and Auckland City Mission outreach social worker.

By working with people on a one-to-one basis, evaluating their needs and advocating on their behalf with social service and health agencies, each navigator makes a profound difference to the lives of their clients. Increasingly, health policy advisors and providers are identifying the important role of navigators from various backgrounds who help older people find their way to the services they need, and the Foundation aims to grow this vital channel as we continue to advance our community activity.

We have also developed a comprehensive community services model which promotes collaborative and integrated care across the whole continuum of care provision. Innovative technology-based, self-directed 'telehealth' pilots have been undertaken, the outcome of which will allow us to respond to the changing needs of the ageing population and, significantly, enable people to live safely and independently in their homes for longer - the key to enhance wellbeing for elders and their carers alike.