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It's all right here... Wyndham and Districts Community Rest Home resident Dugald McKenzie (101) and manager Annette Sinclair are delighted the rest-home has been named the best in New Zealand. "They really look after us," Mr McKenzie said.PHOTO: MARGARET PHILLIPS

Wyndham is in the national spotlight after the town’s rest-home won the overall award for excellence in care at the New Zealand Aged Care Association Excellence of Care awards– the first time a Southland rest-home has won the award.

It was also the first time the Wyndham and Districts Community Rest Home had entered the awards.

New Zealand Aged Care Association chief executive Simon Wallace said it was an acknowledgement of the Wyndham rest-home’s commitment to its residents.

He believed the region should be extremely proud of the small rest-home.

There were 60 entries from throughout New Zealand.

Wyndham and Districts Community Rest Home, a 23-bed facility, was competing with a range of large operations for the top spot.

Among reasons for the rest-home’s success was it went from two-year certification to four-year certification with the Ministry of Health.

The manner in which the rest-home gained support from the community, both in financial terms and the relationship it had, also influenced the judges’ decision, he said.

The rest-home gave back to the community in several ways, including by providing employment, he said.

“It was a whole combination of things that appealed to the judges.”

Manager Annette Sinclair returned home with not only the overall award for excellence, but also the Invacare small operators industry award.

“I was just blown away – it was just like being at the Grammys,” Mrs Sinclair said.

All the finalists were of a high calibre, she said.

The gala dinner was held at the SkyCity Convention Centre in Auckland last Wednesday.

She did not realise there was an overall award so was surprised when she heard the rest-home’s name called.

“It was just really awesome just to think we can do anything in Southland.”

Being named the best in New Zealand was such an honour for “little old Wyndham”, she said.

“I think its amazing for Southland.”