Sooth­ing spec­ta­cle

Trust pro­vides joy to resthome res­i­dents


The Cen­tral Lakes Trust has spent more than $100,000 in the past seven years on gold­fish for rest homes, a pro­ject said to bring ‘‘much de­light to the lives of res­i­dents’’. Trust chief ex­ec­u­tive Paul Al­li­son said the pro­gramme was ini­ti­ated by the trust in 2007 and there are now eight aquaria based in seven rest homes across the dis­trict. The aquaria are sup­plied and main­tained monthly by Alexan­dra-based com­pany Live En­vi­ron­ments Otago Ltd at a to­tal cost of $15,456 a year (an in­crease from $15,120 un­til 2010). ‘‘The feed­back we’ve had has been highly pos­i­tive and it’s been very suc­cess­ful,’’ Mr Al­li­son said. Ranui Home and Hos­pi­tal man­ager Mavis Thorn­ton said the fish were much loved at the Alexan­dra-based home. ‘‘It’s the move­ment, it’s the colour, it’s the tran­quil­ity of fish,’’ she said. Res­i­dents en­joyed them as much as vis­it­ing fam­i­lies and chil­dren and they were a great talk­ing point. The com­pany of the peo­ple who cleaned the tanks and re­placed de­ceased fish was also ben­e­fi­cial. Lake Wakatipu Home and Hos­pi­tal clin­i­cal man­ager Michelle Hay­den said all res­i­dents and vis­i­tors loved the fish, which were kept in the re­cep­tion area. How­ever, one lady in par­tic­u­lar with bad eye­sight, got a lot of joy from them. ‘‘She doesn’t in­ter­act a lot in ac­tiv­i­ties but spends a lot of time en­joy­ing those fish.’’ The aquar­ium was a fea­ture that bright­ened up the area and most peo­ple stopped to have a look at the fish on their way past, she said. ‘‘We all keep a watch­ful eve to see if any are sink­ing to the bot­tom.’’ The trust, which has an in­vest­ment port­fo­lio of $180 mil­lion, gave away $5m in grants in the last year to March 31. Other trust-ini­ti­ated pro­grammes have in­cluded an an­nual $100,000 Cen­tral Lakes Arts Sup­port Scheme, the ter­tiary ed­u­ca­tion schol­ar­ship which has been in­creased to $100,000 for this fi­nan­cial year and a $430,000 con­testable fund to fund projects cel­e­brat­ing the 150th an­niver­sary of the dis­cov­ery of gold in the re­gion.

Rest­ful: Gold­fish funded by Cen­tral Lakes Trust are much loved at rest homes through the dis­trict.

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