Yarrow legacy cares for community

HANNAH FLEMING
Last updated 05:00 15/02/2013
hospice stand
CAMERON BURNELL
Rosemary Tennent and Kevin Nielsen share a joke as they tour the Noel and Melva Yarrow wing of the Te Rangimarie Hospice yesterday.

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A new wing was opened at Hospice Taranaki yesterday thanks to a million-dollar Noel Yarrow legacy.

The Noel and Melva Yarrow wing is beside the Te Rangimarie Hospice. The ribbon for the opening was cut by the Yarrows' daughter, Rosemary Tennent.

The $1 million bequest has enabled the organisation to create a facility that will play a key role in education, and make life easier for families during tough times.

Hospice Taranaki chief executive Kevin Nielsen said to see the facility come together, particularly without having to ask for a cent from the public, was extremely rewarding.

"To have this improved facility for the families and their loved ones going through difficult times is great.

"It's a real privilege to be able to provide all the support we can to those who are nearing the end of their lives."

He said the hospice was the vision of people who started with nothing, more than 20 years ago.

The new wing had been a work in progress for the past three years and it was the Yarrow contribution that had allowed them to move forward.

The wing has an education room for up to 30 people where the hospice will work with health and aged-care professionals.

It contains a new family lounge and family sleeping area that can sleep up to six, with a children's playroom nearby.

A quiet room is also included, as well as room for equipment storage.

An extra bedroom has been added, taking the total hospice in-patient beds to seven.

The national standard for hospices around New Zealand is six beds for every 100,000 people, meaning Taranaki's seven beds will be higher than that benchmark.

Mrs Tennent said opening the wing yesterday was a rewarding experience and she felt very thrilled on behalf of her father, who died in 2008. "The community was very kind to Dad over the years as well, so this is his way of giving back.

"There's a lot of fear associated with coming to the hospice but it really is just a wonderful place.

"It's got something special, it's got this serenity about it."

Proceeds from The Wedding Singer production were used for the fitout of the Yarrow wing.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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