As the largest town in North Otago, Oamaru is home to about 14,000 people. Just 120 kilometres north of Dunedin, Oamaru is another town where Presbyterian Support Otago is part of the community.
Family Works has been involved in the Oamaru community for approximately seven years. Having started with one part-time Social Worker, we have extended our services to meet demand and now have two Social Workers, a Buddy Coordinator, and a Financial Mentor who provides budgeting support.
Our Family Works team members work in the community with families and individuals, directly alongside other providers who are supporting the community.
We have a number of group programmes that run as demand arises, including The Incredible Years parenting programme, Free to be Me course for families affected by family violence, and support for working parents. We are also proud to have a very active Buddy Programme that supports a number of local children.
Iona Enliven care home was built and opened in Oamaru in 1953. Since then Iona has led the way in quality residential care for older people in North Otago. Iona has grown to currently offer 78 beds, with rest home and hospital level care available, alongside a secure dementia care unit.
Iona is beautifully positioned in very large park-like grounds in the north of the town. Right next door, twelve independent living units are providing a way for older residents to make the transition from living in their own home to Iona, when the need arises.
Independent living is also offered via Columba Court, a cluster of seven one-bedroom units we have managed since December 2010 on the south side of Oamaru.