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Brightwater Home ‘like one big family’

Brightwater Home resident Herbie Makene, right, pictured here with family member Isobel Makene.

When Herbie Makene first moved to Enliven’s Brightwater Home in Palmerston North in 2014, he wasn’t sure how he’d cope with the transition to rest home living.

But with the support and encouragement of staff and residents at the Enliven home, Herbie says he’s come to embrace Brightwater as his home.

“I like the people, the friendship and the environment. It really feels like home now,” he says.

Over the years, Brightwater Home has become an unofficial meeting place for members of the Makene whānau. Family member Isobel Makene says she’s shared many a barbeque and boil up with the residents and staff of Brightwater Home.

“I’ll often head out on the outings with residents and staff here, and the grandchildren usually have picnics here at Brightwater when they visit from Hamilton during the school holidays. I know it means a lot to Herbie, to keep that contact with the mokopuna.”

“We love Brightwater because whenever you walk in, you can just feel that the wairu or spirit of the place is really positive. It makes you want to be part of life here, because everyone’s like one big family.”

Brightwater Home and Village manager Lea-Anne Morgan says the home is passionate about ensuring elders feel able to embrace life and stay connected to their family and friends.

“We know that spending quality time with family is an important part of many residents’ lives, so we work hard to build trusting relationships with family members to make them feel welcome visiting and engaging in life at Brightwater.

“It’s wonderful when families tell you that Brightwater is one of their favourite places to be.”

Enliven’s Brightwater Home and Village is located on Brightwater Terrace, Palmerston North and offers independent retirement living, hospital, dementia and palliative care, as well as health recovery and respite care. To learn more visit or call 06 356 4190.