Auckland Council support returns the Anchorage mate wareware (dementia) day care service to Tāmaki Basin

Publish Date : 14 Feb 2024
Opening Of The Anchorage Centre, 11.12.2023
Pictured at the opening of the new Anchorage centre are (from left): Archdeacon Michael Berry of the Anglican Diocese of Auckland; Denise Cosgrove, CE of The Selwyn Foundation; Auckland Deputy Mayor Desley Simpson; Elaine Soakai, Town Manager of the Panmure Business Association; Maungakiekie-Tāmaki Ward Councillor Josephine Bartley; Hon David Cunliffe, chair of The Selwyn Foundation; and Nerissa Henry of the Maungakiekie-Tāmaki Local Board.

Older Aucklanders in Panmure, Glen Innes and Point England who are living with dementia now have a wonderful new mate wareware (dementia) day care centre closer to home, thanks to Auckland Council’s involvement in finding accessible new premises for the service.

The Anchorage – the bright blue building that you’ll notice at 20-22 Lagoon Drive in Panmure – opened in January and offers a day programme for people 65+ years living in the community who have been diagnosed with mild to moderate dementia. The centre is provided by The Selwyn Foundation under contract to Te Whatu Ora - Health New Zealand (formerly District Health Boards).

Staffed by a diversional therapist and activities coordinators, it’s open Monday–Friday from 9am–3pm and provides a programme of cognitive stimulation (memory and thinking activities) and fitness and balance exercises, as well as morning tea and lunch. Clients may attend one or more days per week, with the days of attendance based on the available spaces, the cost to the family/whānau, the individual’s health status and dementia symptoms.

Until November 2022, The Anchorage was located at St Mary’s Church in Glen Innes. When St Mary’s expanded its services, the centre moved to temporary premises out of the area. However, with the assistance of Deputy Mayor Desley Simpson and Eke Panuku Development Auckland in finding a suitable new venue in the heart of Panmure town centre, The Selwyn Foundation is now delighted to bring the service back to Tāmaki Basin, serving the seniors of Panmure, Glen Innes and Point England.

Eke Panuku is Auckland Council’s urban regeneration agency, leading work to enhance Panmure’s town centre as a place to live, visit and do business. It also manages property on council’s behalf, which is how the opportunity to find the Anchorage a new home was identified. The property is leased on a commercial basis, thus generating a return for council.

In New Zealand today, almost 70,000 people are living with dementia, most of whom are undiagnosed and live in the community. Four out of five New Zealanders know or have known someone living with the illness.

Deputy Mayor Simpson comments: “In line with council’s ‘Tāmaki Makaurau Tauawhi Kaumātua – Age-friendly Auckland Action Plan’ and similar initiatives at a national and global level, we were pleased to partner with The Selwyn Foundation to provide an accessible, community-based service that can improve the lives of older people and their families/whānau, as well as benefit the communities in which they live.

“This new day programme offers a safe haven – a supportive, positive environment for the kuia and kaumātua who attend, that meets the unique needs of those navigating the challenges of dementia. Ultimately, we want all Aucklanders to feel safe, included and to be able to participate in their communities. The opening of the Anchorage represents another opportunity for that, and Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland is stronger as a result.”

The Selwyn Foundation’s chief executive, Denise Cosgrove, says: “At Selwyn, our strategic vision is ‘Respectful Ageing for all, within communities that thrive’, Oranga Mātua | Oranga Tangata. Therefore, thanks to council’s assistance, we’re delighted to be returning our Anchorage mate wareware dementia day care service to the communities of Tāmaki Basin, thus aiding the seniors who attend to age with dignity and respect and live safely within their neighbourhoods for longer.”

Eke Panuku is delighted to have found a suitable property for the Anchorage in council’s portfolio, says Anna Skelton, Eke Panuku’s Precinct Property Manager for Panmure. “This is an excellent outcome for both Eke Panuku and Panmure. The centre will provide a much-needed service to the community and it’s great that they can do this in one of our formerly vacant properties. It will bring activity to the town centre and provide an income for council.”

Referral to Anchorage requires a general practitioner to diagnose dementia and then refer the person and their principal family/whānau carer for a needs assessment service coordination (NASC). For the person with diagnosed dementia and their key family/whānau carer, Dementia Auckland provides free support and information (contact them on 0800 433 636 or at                            

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