Most nurses experience it right at the start. It could be on the bus to your first day of placement, when you have the urge to lean over and tell a stranger that you’re a nurse by the way.
Or the butterflies you get when you put on your uniform and realise there’s a real-life nurse staring back at you in the mirror.
Or maybe it’s that first time you answer the ward phone and introduce yourself as “student nurse”, trying not to grin from ear to ear.
For me, it was in the months leading up to starting my nursing degree. I was working as a carer and had gone to the shops to pick something up for a resident wearing my uniform. I was in a rush to get back and frustrated to find a queue trailing right round the shop.
But then a man near the front clocked my uniform and insisted I was served first. No one in the queue complained. In fact they all smiled at me warmly.
What was this power my uniform possessed?
Was this… respect?
Our #proud2nurse campaign developed from discussions in the NT office about whether nursing is losing that respect.
We worry that a little bit more pride is lost from the profession every time a negative headline accuses nurses of lacking compassion or suggests training is not fit for purpose, or a story about one nurse carries the implication that nursing as a whole has “lost its way”.
It frustrates us – and we’re not the ones out there on the frontline experiencing a fourth year of pay freeze or below-inflation pay rises. And you do it while managing growing expectations and seeing much of the blame for the ills in healthcare cast in your direction.
Hearing negativity about the job you’re proud of, the career you joined to make other peoples’ lives better, must be disheartening.
So, we’re fighting back. We’re going to show the world that nurses are proud and why they have every right to be.
Add your voice and share your stories. There’s loads of ways you can get involved - here’s just a few:
- Take a selfie and email it to us at the address below – print off our #proud2nurse sign and add your reason, making sure it can be clearly read in your picture
- Tell your story – email us your short stories of what gives you that buzz of pride (no more than 100 words please!)
- Tweet us – since we started this campaign, there’s already been hundreds of tweets with the #proud2nurse hashtag
- Make a video – we’re not looking for Oscar-winning performances, simply tell your camera phone why you’re #proud2nurse, then email it to us
- Appreciate what you and your colleagues do – it may seem sentimental, but take a moment to appreciate the fact that every day you come to work you make someone’s life better
Send your contributions to our campaign to: firstname.lastname@example.org