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Enliven residents experience new relaxation technology

Residents of Enliven homes are benefiting from the use of a state-of-the-art relaxation technology.

Leading not-for-profit aged care provider Enliven, part of Presbyterian Support Central, has raised funds to purchase three Nordic Wellness Chairs to-date, with more fundraising in the pipeline.

The chairs use soothing music, gentle movement, tactile stimulation and a weighted blanket to relax, calm and soothe those feeling anxious, angry or agitated.

A grant of more than $32,000 from the AR & TI Harper Charitable Trust allowed Enliven to purchase two of the chairs for residents of Coombrae Home in Feilding and Brightwater Home in Palmerston North. Kowhainui Home in Whanganui will also receive a chair thanks to funding from the Macaulay Trust.

Brightwater Home clinical coordinator Pinky Thomas says they have had fantastic results using the chair for residents who require dementia-level care.

“We have one resident who used to be really unsettled at night, and in the chair she actually relaxes.”

Before they had the chair, Pinky says a member of staff would usually have to stay near the resident at night in case she got out of bed and started pacing around.

“The music, the swaying and the weighted blanket all help to settle her,” Pinky says.

“It is a great addition because it provides relief from the physical and mental effects of anxiety and agitation without the need for medication.”

The chairs have a built-in audio system so when the residents sit back they are surrounded by calming sounds.

“They can put their head back and the music is in their ears,” Pinky says. “It’s much more soothing for the music to be closer to them.”

Presbyterian Support Central chief executive officer Pat Waite says the donation has allowed these homes to have access to valuable resources.

“This incredible technology is not available in any other elder care facility in New Zealand, and we are extremely grateful to the AR & TI Harper Trust and the Macaulay Trust for partnering with us to support our elders in this way.”

Enliven is seeking further funding so that it can offer the wellness chair technology to all residents at its dementia care facilities.

To find out more about what Enliven has to offer, visit

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