Sam Martin, Manager of Fun, also known as the social and regional events manager of Metlifecare Bay of Plenty and Hamilton, is our Aged Care Hero of the week.
Martin’s day to day goes from book talks to the box office, charity to cheerleading. Nothing is out of her depth. In her role, she supports residents in the six villages with social and entertainment activities – the ‘Manager of Fun’ title is quite literal in this sense.
She designs and executes at least one big regional event a year, and recently, Martin taught and trained the Papamoa Beach Village Pom Poms into a new cheerleading routine.
Along with this, Martin gives acting lessons, books entertainment, talks, organises fashion shows, basically everything and anything you have ever dreamt of in terms of entertainment. No one is left feeling bored on her watch.
When running larger events like fashion shows, she finds a way to rope in her loving family to help her out with the logistics, lighting and much more.
Her favourite part of her role is the fact she gets to write, direct and act. Anything she can do that’s related to putting on a show will get her buzzing.
“I love working with residents on the stage, and it’s so rewarding to see them finding a new passion in theatre craft,” said Martin.
Martin has been working in this role for six years, and one of her most recent highlights is that she completed a post lockdown comedy show called “O, Corona” – it was just what everyone needed after lockdown. Undoubtedly, Martin loves to write and produce plays and, it runs in her family.
Her family has been involved in theatre their whole lives. With her daughter being an award-winning singer and theatre director and two of her sons are performers. One of her son's was the youngest person ever to run tech for a theatre stage show in Tauranga, he was just nine at the time.
“My background and passion are events of all kinds; I previously ran my own company specialising in Mind Body and Spirit events. I’ve toured all over New Zealand with a show called ‘Mediums Live’ and worked with famous New Zealand medium, Kelvin Cruikshank.”
One of the most rewarding experiences Martin has had with Metlifecare is when she was photographing residents for a calendar to raise money for cancer charities for men. It was titled ‘Calendar Blokes’ and featured the more ‘daring’ men in the village doing activities ‘naked’.
“It was so much fun to do, and we raised more than $4,000 for charity.”