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Celebration For Nurses

Celebration For Nurses 

Nurses, students and staff at Whitireia celebrated International Nurses Day yesterday with an afternoon tea, marking Florence Nightingale’s birthday in a celebration shared amongst nurses worldwide.

New Zealand has a proud history of nursing - the first hospital was built in Auckland in 1845; the first training school began in Wellington in 1884 and state registration of nurses began in 1901.

“This day is about the social contract nurses have with the public, it’s about our commitment to professional health care for all. Like all birthdays, it marks the past and looks to the future” said Postgraduate Primary Health Care tutor, Kerri Arcus.

Health Minister Tony Ryall spoke to nurses and congratulated one particular Whitireia graduate on her success.

 “Today I would particularly like to share with you the story of one of those graduates who, as a self described "school drop-out" and single mother, beat the odds to get her nursing degree. It was an achievement she never thought possible and one which she acknowledges changed her life, said Ryall.Riz Evans, who is here with us today, left school at 15, was pregnant at 16, had her first child at 17 and her second at 18.

She was on her own, on the DPB and by her own admission, on the road to nowhere.

But encouragement from both family/whanau and support agencies - along with a lot of hard slog - saw her, in her own words, turn her life around.

This young woman who thought she wasn't good enough became a top performer in Whitireia Polytechnic's year-long Health Sciences foundation course and has gone on to complete her Bachelor of Nursing and is now working as a nurse at Hutt Valley DHB's inpatient psychiatric unit.

But Riz hasn't finished there. With funding from the Clinical Training Agency Workforce Development Programme, Riz is now working towards a post-graduate certificate in mental health nursing - and the fulfilment of her dream to work in maternal mental health. “

Whitireia is a leading provider of Foundation, Certificate, Diploma, Bachelor and Postgraduate qualifications in New Zealand. In July 2009 Whitireia will become one of only two educational institutes to offer a Bachelor of Nursing (Māori) which will sit alongside the existing Bachelor of Nursing and Bachelor of Nursing (Pacific) qualifications.
 
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