On Thursday 6th December, I took the opportunity to travel up to Manchester, where I joined colleagues and spoke about nursing as a career.
You can watch the Webinar by following this link here; https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5obQ63D7MoE
The chance to inspire young people was exhilarating! The discussion, which was a collaboration between NHS England & Spark Careers, was hosted by a guy from TV named Alex. I don’t watch much TV & I didn’t know who this guy was. And he was pretty cool about it too. But what I really liked was the diversity of my nursing colleagues sat either side of me. Charlotte, a newly qualified nurse, who is well known through out the nursing world, not least for her leadership but also the encouragement she gives others around her. Jane, the Chief Nursing Officer who despite her high ranking title, is such a down to earth person with nursing truly at the heart of her actions. And Annette, a mental health nurse who spent 18 years working within civil service before making the choice to study Nursing.
Each one of us had a different journey and each one of us a story to tell. But there were clear similarities too. The desire to inspire being the reason for us being there. Once we had sat down, it was like we had known each other for a while. We talked about ideas and shared our views on different areas of healthcare, all whilst the tech team did their thing to make sure sound was perfect etc. After the recording was made, it was absolutely amazing to hear from pupils at this school, with questions that were unplanned and allowed us to give honest and truthful answers. There were questions on pay, specialities and routes into nursing. It’s a shame we couldn’t share some of the brilliant info graphs, such as this one, which shows the routes into nursing.
All in all, it was a brilliant day. It was lovely to see Charlotte & Jane again, and meet Alex and Annette. I think the reason I agreed to go was to try and inspire the next generation of nurses but also to try and raise the profile and opinion of a profession I am proud to be in.
And this was made even more apparent after attending the launch of Nursing Now England.
I want to take this opportunity just to share an explanation of what nursing now England is and where it fits in;
“The Perceptions of Nursing and Midwifery programme was launched to improve how our professions are perceived and help to re-ignite the passion in our workforce. Since that time, the work has seen many successes with nurses and midwives up and down the country responding to the call to action. More than 2000 nurses have signed up as Ambassadors, hundreds more have blogged about their work, and all are actively engaged with the programme.
Whilst the Perceptions of Nursing and Midwifery programme has been hugely successful, there is still work to be done and, it is with this in mind, that we are re-naming the programme ‘Nursing Now England’ and aligning this important piece of work with the global ‘Nursing Now’ campaign, which also aims to raise the status and profile of nursing.
The Perceptions of Midwifery programme will continue under the same name in order to give this important workforce its own separate focus.”
Now that that is out of the way, how did it feel at the actual day itself? Well, a huge shout out to my dear Lucy who was one a panel of speakers. She did such an amazing job. You can see the video below, in which she really hits home the importance of having highly skilled nurses, especially as a patient going through potentially life altering medical care.placeholder://
It was the nurses that recognised Lucy’s needs, and those same nurses that helped Lucy feel safe. Nursing is an amazing profession. The thing about when change comes about in nursing, which is for the most part positive change, it has a positive impact on communities and on public health. As nurses, we don’t always realise just how much responsibility and trust we have in us. Professor Jane Cummings said some great things during the day;
“Nurses and Midwives experiences & knowledge are valuable assets. Their voices deserve to be heard at the table.”
“Leadership is more than just a job title, we are all leaders in our own right!”
“It’s essentially that nurses are seen as leaders and experts in what we do, we must be able to influence internationally on the global stage.”
The launch was truly special, it helped me realise just how special nursing is and the potential impact we as nurses could have on the lives of everyone in our community. When nurses speaks as one voice, then nurses have strength. Public health requires change. Public attitude has too change.
Did you know only two-fifths of British parents say they would be proud if their son became a nurse. How gut wrenching is that?! Whilst I don’t want to talk about this here, I do think that the economist article makes some very good and valid point. And for me, that’s what I hope Nursing Now England will help to change, these society stereotypes. All in all, it was wonderful to be a part of such an amazing day!