As the year is coming to an end, I want to take this opportunity to acknowledge the courageous work you have all done including facing Covid-19 and experiencing lockdown. We know for many of you this did challenge your recovery as you faced the added stressors that came with the lockdown. 

Over the last 14 years I have worked at Hanmer I have come to appreciate our strength is how we all work together supporting each other. The support and care we witness you giving each other in group is a testimony to that. Time and time again when I ask what is it about the programme that helps? The answer is consistently the same: It is the non-judgmental, caring and understanding experienced in the groups. 

It has been a big year for all of us in saying goodbye to our fearless leader and founder of Hanmer Clinic, David Benton. He has now retired twice and from his latest reports, he is enjoying more time on the golf course. David is also in the background assisting us and has been a great source of information and learning. Speed dial is a wonderful thing. 

We also said goodbye to Marg, our herbalist who for many of you had been a great source of assistance with detoxing and also her care and herbal support concerning early recovery struggles. Margie returned to her family in the South Island which has been a dream for her for some years. She has been hugely missed. 

If I reflect on 2020, change has been a central part of this year for all of us. 

As human beings, change is often uncomfortable, and we prefer the comfort of familiarity. But as we know, without change, we don’t grow. Change is central to the journey of recovery and we know we ask a lot of you with the changes we encourage you to make. 

But we can all acknowledge this year has asked a lot of all of us with the added stress of Covid-19. 

The team at Hanmer Clinic want to wish you all a safe and happy holiday and we will be looking forward to seeing you again in the New Year. Please remember we will be picking up messages for anyone who is needing support over the holiday season. A special thank you to the Peer Support Committee for the work you do to support clients at Hanmer. Please check out some of the resources Tarnia is posting on the website and we encourage you to attend AA/NA support groups over the break. 

Kia kaha, kia maia, kia manawanui! 

Be strong, be brave, be steadfast!


Jill Knowler  Clinic Director