The Canterbury Brain Collective (CBC) is excited to receive a grant of $100,000 from New Zealand Community Trust to help cover the costs of the gymnasium and ancillary equipment within the BrainTree Wellness Centre facility, currently under construction in Christchurch.
CBC is a joint venture established by Dementia Canterbury and Multiple Sclerosis & Parkinson's Canterbury. For years, these two charities have been providing services from very substandard premises. Their current premises are an office building with makeshift alterations to accommodate the gymnasium and studio area and are no longer fit for purpose. Despite this, the use of the facilities has increased substantially over time. The new centre will be far more attractive to members and they expect a significant increase in the number of Cantabrians using the gymnasium and its associated services.
The centre will include two seminar rooms, a gymnasium and a studio space, and a social area with a wholefood café, all of which will be used by both societies and local community groups for structured exercise classes, use of the gym equipment, boxing, dancing, relaxation, and general physical fitness.
Project Coordinator Madeline Smith commented, “The BrainTree Wellness Centre is a first-of-its-kind project in Ōtautahi-Christchurch that will support Cantabrians with neurological conditions when the new facility opens in May 2022. In consultation, the CBC has planned this project, designed the building and fundraised for the project. Over the last year, the CBC has been delighted with the support of the community in fundraising, and we are extremely grateful to have received this generous grant from NZCT to help establish a gymnasium/studio within the centre. The project began civil works in February 2021 and is now embarking on the first foundation pour.
“The Braintree Centre includes a shared office premises for the myriad of charitable societies supporting people living in the community with neurological conditions. BrainTree has adopted a 'total wellness' approach - covering exercise, diet, cognitive stimulation, and social connection - all of which have a hugely positive impact on the lives of people living with a neurological condition. This approach extends to the family members who are caring for someone with a condition, as it will provide a space for people and their whānau to connect with others who understand, and to encourage engagement with the support services, information, and other activities available in our community.”
The BrainTree Wellness Centre is a not-for-profit charitable project, created and designed to provide community-based, holistic neurological care that encourages those living with neurological conditions, such as Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, dementia, and strokes, to live an independent and active life, while improving their physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. There are approximately 15,000 people in the wider Canterbury area currently living with a neurological condition and this number is expected to double within the next 20 years.