Building Projects

The Health Centre, Claris

Building Projects - Great Barrier Island Health Center conference room and new addition.
The conference room and 2012 new addition.

In 1990 the Trust’s coordinator enlisted invaluable support from a local architect; with plans agreed, Island trades-people were employed and the building gifted by the Health Board was transformed into a modern functional Community Health Centre.

Twenty years later in 2010 an extensive refurbishment was undertaken – enabled by a generous grant from ASB Community Trust. Careful architectural planning allowed a reconfiguration of the medical end of the building, improving spaces and adding a third consulting room. The interior was refreshed throughout; floor coverings replaced and walls repainted.

In 2012 the Trust once again took on a building project, with funding support from the Local Board, Auckland City Council enabling the addition of an annex room adjoining the community end with external access providing confidentiality. Mid 2013 finds the buildings and infrastructure at the Health Centre in very good repair.

The Health Centre in Claris is divided into three sections:

  • Medical consulting rooms, reception / office area, waiting room, toilet / shower facilities, an emergency treatment area and X-ray facilities.
  • A short stay area which includes a kitchen, bathroom, and a bed for emergency and overnight care should the weather deteriorate and aircraft cannot land. It also doubles as a birthing unit in special circumstances.
  • The community house area includes: A large conference room which has modern appointments including: broadband access, and a multi-media projector. Adjacent to this is the Community Worker’s office and a hallway which houses a clothing recycle depot. A small annex room is connected by a veranda to the main community area and was designed to target smaller groups and one-on-one services; e.g. counselling, smaller meetings and as office space for special projects. The office is well equipped; including broadband, telephone and printer/scanner. The room also has a plinth for the use of allied health professionals.

The Health Centre has a modern alternative power system which includes an extensive bank of solar panels, batteries and an inverter. Cooking and heating are provided by LPG gas appliances. The building project is an evolving one as new needs and priorities arise in the community. Maintenance is an ongoing effort and to this end the Trust has a reviewable 10 year plan.

Te Kotuku – The ‘Nurses Cottage’, Port Fitzroy

Building Projects - Great Barrier Island community hui participants.
A colourful group – community workers, volunteers and visitors. (Photo provided by Rendt Gorter)

The Nurses Cottage was originally built in 1954 as a clinic and accommodation for the then Public Health Nurse employed by the Auckland Hospital Board. In 1995 the Auckland Area Health Board donated the cottage to the Health Trust. The building has been upgraded and refurbished several times over the intervening years: In 1996 with the assistance a grant from the Ministry of Health, and in 2006 with a grant from the ASB Community Trust.

The cottage is a multi-use facility allowing easy access to health care for the North Barrier residents and visitors – many of whom arrive by boat. Primarily it provides a base for the island’s northern Rural Nurse with the doctor holding a weekly clinic. However similar to the centre at Claris it also has the ability to hold patients needing observation or transfer. It is also used for small group meetings and contains a community renal dialysis machine.

The cottage has an inverter and battery system for power generation. Solar & LPG gas for hot water and cooking. A wood burning fire provides heating.