Monday 4 September 2023

Life-changing healthcare at HomeGround – Leslie’s story

Ailing health forced Leslie to give up his job as a pipelayer in his 40s and it’s why he had to move into social housing.  

But Leslie’s new home brought new problems; it was a high-rise building without a lift, so Leslie had to climb seven flights of stairs to reach his apartment, greatly aggravating his heart condition.   

“I’d be absolutely wiped out and it would take me 15 minutes to be able to breathe properly again,” he recalls. “Eventually I ended up in hospital and they said it wasn’t suitable for me to stay at that place.” 

Fortunately, Leslie was able to take the opportunity of a lifetime – permanent tenancy at HomeGround, where he has easy access to the medical care he needs, when he needs it.

“I’m so much happier here because if I get sick, I just hop in the lift and go down to the Calder Health Centre. The other thing about the Centre is that it has a lift directly to the basement so you can transfer to the ambulance without having people stare at you.” 


Calder Health Centre at HomeGround's laneway

Calder Health Centre at HomeGround’s ground floor laneway

“At my old place, if I phoned an ambulance, I would be waiting hours but here they come to HomeGround straight away. It makes me feel a lot safer.” 

Leslie also feels safer at HomeGround because he is not dependent on a flat mate. In a previous home, he was beaten and seriously injured by one flat mate and threatened with a gun by another. 

A sign at HomeGround showing the co-location of the apartments and Calder Health Centre

The HomeGround Apartments and Calder Health Centre are conveniently co-located within HomeGround for easy accessibility of those in greatest need

“I took in flatmates because I wanted company. It can get lonely on your own. But after terrible experiences, I never wanted to share with another person. Here, I have my own place but there’s always someone around and you can go downstairs to chat to the staff; it’s really good,” Leslie says.

“We have community lunches which makes it feel like one big family. There are some good people here and I’ve made some great friends.” 

And Leslie has found other opportunities to improve his wellbeing at HomeGround: “We can work in the garden. It’s everybody’s garden, but it feels like your own. I go up there to meditate.”  

For Leslie, the wrap-around medical care and community support available at HomeGround have dramatically enhanced his quality of life. 

“This place is the best thing that’s ever happened to me, and my life has improved 100 percent.” 





In the last year, generous

people like you have

helped Aucklanders in need...


food parcels distributed to families & individuals in greatest need*


health consultations at Calder Health Centre*


drug and alcohol

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