CELEBRATE the expanding role of nurses
(NC) On May 12, medical professionals all over the globe commemorate the birth of Florence Nightingale in celebration of International Nurses Day. Since 1965, the United Nations has worked with the International Council of Nurses to show support for the work nurses do in improving the lives of patients and the healthcare system.
The role of nurses varies across the world depending on the resources available. In sub-Saharan Africa for example, nurses often take on roles traditionally held by doctors and pharmacists because for people living in small, rural villages, access to large hospitals and fully licensed doctors is scarce.
Nurses take on a more advanced position when they are the only medical professional available. Young women in sub-Saharan Africa who choose to enter nursing school are seen as leaders in their communities and garner a great deal of respect. However, attending nursing school is often a challenge due to the immense poverty that persists in Uganda. Ruth is one such student who has struggled to attend higher education and become a fully licensed nurse. Ruth grew up the eldest of six children in a small village in Uganda. When she was born, Ruth went to live with her grandmother while her mother tried to earn an income for the family. With her grandmother aging and ill, Ruth was in charge of carrying firewood, digging the ground for crops, and fetching water.
But Ruth studied hard and took an interest in a variety of subjects —particularly the sciences. She earned an amazing academic record and scored high on Ugandan national exams despite missing many classes. Her family couldn’t afford tuition, but the Beautiful World charity offered her a scholarship to fulfill her dream of attending nursing school. Ruth is now a role model and leader. She’s been attending nursing school for four months and can give vaccinations to her patients. Ruth hopes to teach the importance of vaccinations to her community to help stop the spread of disease.
Beautiful World is located in Toronto. Believing that hope begins with education, the organization supports young women living in poverty in Uganda, Rwanda and Sierra Leone who want to pursue higher education. Beautiful World scholarships provide everything students need to succeed, allowing them to focus entirely on school instead of worrying about basic survival and these courageous young women graduate with the potential to spread hope in their community.