New leadership for Resthaven Village

By Petrina Wright | Posted: Friday June 9, 2023

Hard work and commitment to aged care proves a winning formula for an Enliven nurse.

Gore local Robyn Byron has risen through the ranks of aged care from care worker, registered nurse and clinical manager to take over the helm of Resthaven Village.

She replaces Donna McEntyre as manager of Resthaven who retired on June 2 after four years in the role.

Robyn is a well-known identity in Gore, having lived and worked in the rural town her entire life, bar one year.

Her association with Resthaven started in 2001 when she was employed as a caregiver while training to be a nurse. When she graduated in 2003, she was one of five new graduates employed by Presbyterian Support Southland (PSS) as registered nurses (RN) that year.

After five years working as an RN, she decided she wanted to experience another aspect of nursing and took a job at Southland Hospital.

However, she made her return to Resthaven 12 months later.

“I missed being able to develop relationships with my patients and their families…and I missed aged care,” she said.

“You form a bond with your patients/residents and in some ways become part of their family, [particularly] if they are here for a long time.”

Robyn returned to Resthaven as a clinical manager.

Twelve years on, she was ready for her next challenge of managing the care home.

“I wanted to make a difference to our residents…and I wanted a new challenge.”

And, Robyn already has ideas for how to improve the experience for residents.

“I want to look at how we can accommodate our community better.”

She aspired to consider other models of care and opportunities for Resthaven residents which would provide better connection between the community and the care home.

She also wanted to encourage more community involvement with the care home and its residents, which she said had waned since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, such as play group visits, musicians coming in to entertain the residents and people bringing their pets into the home for residents to interact with.

Enliven director Carol Riddle said it was really exciting to see a nurse progress to a management position.

“It is something as an organisation that we celebrate,…and her absolute commitment to aged care is commendable.

“The sector needs the Robyns of this world.

“I’m excited to work alongside her and for what lies ahead for Resthaven.”

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