Sustainability: our commitment and actions

As outlined in our 5-year strategy FNF is committed to creating an environmentally sustainable future. This World Environment Day we are sharing with you what this actually means, our achievements so far and our upcoming plans. We are also launching our broader Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) statement today.

Our new ESG statement looks at our impact on the environment and also on the proactive management of social impacts of our organisations both in communities and on employees; and the transparency and evidence of effective governance which underpins our charity. 

We recognise that our greatest influence on sustainability is achieved through the growth and development of our nursing and midwifery membership and alumni community.

Equipping the FNF community with the capabilities to respond to a rapidly changing and complex health and care landscape, by increasing their core confidence to lead, is central to our purpose.

Through our leadership development provision and in partnership with health and social care providers, policy makers and our professional regulators, FNF can play a part in working together for a heathier world.

  • Nursing and Midwifery Leadership: FNF’s education provision empowers nurses and midwives to become effective leaders who can positively impact health and wellbeing, advance the equality agenda, and create sustainable healthcare services. By investing in our education programmes, we can build the capacity of healthcare professionals to drive positive change for both people and the planet.
  • Influence on our sector and suppliers: As a leader in the third sector, FNF is committed to promoting equitable and sustainable practices that benefit our partners, suppliers, and ultimately, the communities we serve. By setting high standards, and insisting on evidence of our partners’ commitment to the same, we can role model best practices that foster positive social and environmental impact.
  • Working in partnership: FNF recognises that advancing the equality and environmental agendas requires collaboration across the health and care sector and beyond. We are proud to work in partnership with the NHS, independent healthcare providers, and regulators to drive thought leadership and innovative solutions that translate into tangible actions. Together, we can create a more equitable and sustainable future for all.
Sustainability achievements and next steps
  • In partnership with Nuffield Health, we have implemented our first Green Healthcare Leadership programme resulting in 18 clinical change projects saving 6,000 tonnes of carbon. There were some fantastic stories and projects, for example Mauvena Rowe-Mason (pictured centre with Gemma Stacey FNF Deputy CEO on the left, and Caroline Smith Chief Quality and Operating Officer, Nuffield Health on the right), whose project to improve discharge time between ICU and the wards reduced the carbon footprint of the unit by over 670 kg of Co2 and improved patient care. “Before this programme I didn’t think much about sustainability at work. I did have some concerns but wasn’t taking any action. Doing this programme has made a difference to me and to my whole team.”

This programme will be running again later this year – look out for details of the new programme and how to apply.

  • We have entered into a new partnership with the Eden Project and have developed a new 3-day residential leadership programme: Empowering Sustainable Leaders. This is for senior nurses or midwives with an interest in or responsibility for sustainability. Find out more and apply here.
  • We are measuring our carbon footprint in all areas of work to reduce carbon emissions in our work. Data collection is in progress to provide and baseline and inform targets. Linked to this we have developed a low carbon events policy to ensure we minimise our carbon footprint.
  • We will be launching a new Sustainability Subject Expert Group (SEG) this summer. Florence Nightingale Foundation facilitates a number of SEGs to influence areas of workforce policy that are identified by our members as most significant to them as senior nurses and midwives working in a range of sectors. SEGs include individuals who have personal and professional expertise in the area of focus and commit to working collaboratively to use our collective networks and influence to forward the policy agenda and contribute to the evidence base.
  • We have launched the Florence Forest: focusing on environmental regeneration through the Cabilla Forest Scheme. 200 trees have been planted so far.

We have a lot to celebrate but this is an ongoing commitment. Find out more in our ESG action plan, which we will be updating and reporting against on a regular basis. 

“Our group of nine arrived from all corners of the UK, and we spent three days connecting with nature and developing a deep understanding our responsibility to Mother Nature. The symmetry of the Eden project and NHS is evident, and made me truly appreciate my responsibility in developing a sustainable workforce to ensure nursing flourishes in the NHS.  On this World Environmental Day, realise that every small contribution to sustainability in the NHS will leave your lasting FNF legacy.” (Aoife Shihab, FNF Scholar)