Students Day Blog Series

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  • Students Day Blog Series: Najla Aweys Ali’s Reflections

The student day was held in London, at Kings College University of London. It consisted of an initial discussion with an expert panel of health professionals, student nurses and midwives from all around the UK. Followed by a guided tour of the Florence Nightingale Museum. The event finished at Westminster Abbey with a commemoration service for Florence Nightingale.

The panels discussion was motivating and supporting. It covered some challenging situations that student nurses and midwives face during their placement, and how we as students can speak up for our patients and make the changes for our service users for better outcome.

Their advice was to put the service users at heart. Always ask for their feedback to be able to improve and provide the best service. The panels history and their journey were not as I thought. It was as difficult as it could be, however they were determined and focused until they achieved their dream jobs. Their advice for us was to stay motivated and to look after ourselves.

Afterwards, we visited the Florence Nightingale Museum. It was an incredibly unique experience, which has helped me gain more insight into Florence’s life and career. Her compassion and love to nursing has influenced nursing today in protecting ourselves and others during COVID-19. The need to wash hands thoroughly and her infection prevention protocol was the key to prevent the spreading of COVID-19.

Finally, we went to Westminster Abbey to witness the Florence Nightingale Commemoration service. This years’ service was especially poignant as a Roll of Honour recognising the nurses, midwives, nursing associates and health care support workers who died during the pandemic. This was processed by the UK Chief Nursing Officers to pay tribute to the efforts of nurses and midwives in conflict zones across the world, including Ukraine.

The service was amazing. The huge venue was filled with over 2000 guest to celebrate and give thanks to our national and international nursing and midwifery communities. The commemoration this year I believe was filled with different emotions; the honours of those sadly lost during Covid -19 and our dead were remembered. A lamp, symbolic of Florence Nightingale was carried through the Abbey.

The day left me with so many feelings and thoughts. I was so grateful to be part of this fantastic experience and I was honoured to meet the amazing panel.

Thank you, Florence Nightingale Foundation, for this lifelong memorable experience.