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Books and crosswords keep Eva young

Resident Eva Rolls indulges her love of books at Enliven’s Kandahar Home in Masterton.


For some it’s chatting with friends, for others it’s playing sport – for Masterton’s Eva Rolls, it’s the  pleasure of reading a good book which makes life worth living.

“I’ve always loved things which stimulate my mind and make me think, even from a young age, and I’ve always been an avid reader,” says the Kandahar Home resident.

“I particularly like crime novels by authors like Lee Child, and I also really love crosswords…as you can probably tell,” she chuckles, eyeing the stacks of crosswords on the table next to her.

The elder’s passion for problem-solving is well-known among staff and residents at the home, who ensure Eva always has a plentiful supply of mind-teasing puzzles at hand.

“We love that Eva’s so pro-active about keeping herself challenged, so we always try to look out for things she would like.

“Apart from clipping puzzles for her, we always make sure Eva knows about any activities going on here like quizzes, exercise classes or arts and crafts. It’s a joy to see her sharing her passion with others,” says recreation officer Di McCuish.

Kandahar Home and its sister site, Kandahar Court, both follow Enliven’s elder-centred philosophy, which encourages elders to seek out choice, independence and meaningful activity in their lives.

A key part of helping elders do that is getting to know them one-on-one and finding out what they need to thrive, says Home and Court manager Peter Newman.

“We see every day how just a little support can go a long way for residents, whether that takes the form of clipping crosswords for them, buying seeds for a keen gardener with mobility issues or simply taking an interest in their day.

“Everyone is different, which is why we’re so committed to getting to know each and every resident as a person in their own right and finding out what makes them tick.”

Kandahar Home, and sister-site, Kandahar Court, are both located in Lansdowne, Masterton. To learn more about the homes or the Enliven philosophy, visit www.enlivencentral.org.nz. You can also call directly on 06 370 0447 (Kandahar Home) or 06 370 0449 (Kandahar Court).