Affordable housing for seniors opens in Leeston

Community rallies to provide supported housing options for local elderly.

Voluntary efforts spanning more than a decade culminate in the formal opening of Abbeyfield House in Leeston on 10 February 2018. Providing family style accommodation for up to 14 residents, each with their own private studio, the House is the latest Abbeyfield House to reach completion, thanks to committed volunteers and the generous support of Rata Foundation, Housing New Zealand, Selwyn District Council, Ellesmere Lions, Ellesmere Vintage Club and countless local benefactors. The house cost $2.6 million to establish and is projected to provide a home to hundreds of local retirees over its lifetime.

“We are extremely grateful to everyone who has supported this Abbeyfield House for the many older people who want to continue to live in the Ellesmere district but just need a little extra support and company to continue living active lives,” says Abbeyfield Ellesmere chairman Murray Stephens.

“We especially want to thank our Abbeyfield Companions of Ellesmere (ACE) fundraising group who from small beginnings have raised a substantial amount of money, supported of course by our wonderful community.”

The housekeeper provides all food, including two cooked meals a day and general support. This proven housing model offers companionship, support and security for residents, and is made possible through the work of volunteer management committees.

Residents pay an all-inclusive rent which is affordable if their only income is National Superannuation. Abbeyfield is not a healthcare provider per se – residents are mobile and supported to remain active members of the community.

“We heartily congratulate Abbeyfield Ellesmere on the opening of this beautiful house. It is a fine example of what dedicated people who care about their community can achieve, and is a true asset for the district,” comments Abbeyfield NZ Executive Officer Susan Jenkins.

Abbeyfield House will be formally opened by Selwyn MP Hon. Amy Adams at 2.30 pm on Saturday 10 February.


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