Feedback: awards and activity

07 December 2018

Members of the CPHVA executive share highlights of 2018, Mary Seacole winners are announced, and a conference MacQueen Bursary award winner offers a reflection.

Janet Conference

School Nurses Meet
Executive events

Back in July, Gavin Fergie and I visited school nurses based in Gwent, an area which covers five boroughs in Wales. There were school nurses, a looked-after children’s nurse (the only member of Unite), student nurses and school support nurses present. We used the opportunity to promote Unite and its services. Gavin discussed the role of Unite in supporting staff with practice issues and we left member packs, journals and resources.

The team were really welcoming and keen to learn more about member services. I discussed my role as Wales chair, and gave details of future events. Gavin asked attendees about any particular issues they had. They were very similar issues to school nurses UK-wide and included increasing caseloads and a change in intensity of involvement in child protection. Gavin also had the opportunity to meet with our SCPHN students, congratulating them on completing their programme, and explaining the benefits of Unite.

Michelle Moseley, Wales chair, CPHVA executive


Seamus Heaney HomePlace in Magherafelt, Northern Ireland (NI) hosted a

Unite-CPHVA Regional Conference in June which incorporated the celebration of NHS 70. Chaired by NI executive member and NI chair Louise Hales, it was the third annual regional conference organised by the regional committee, further raising the Unite-CPHVA profile in NI.

I kicked off proceedings by welcoming delegates and special guests, which included Alison Hume, assistant director of nursing, Northern Trust; Mary Rafferty, nurse consultant, Public Health Agency; Sinead Hanna, Belfast Trust; and Taryn Trainor, Unite regional women equality officer.

The keynote speech was delivered by Bill Woodside (INEQE Group) who focused on child safety and safeguarding. He covered the social feeds most commonly utilised by teenagers, highlighted the dangers and vulnerability that children face and the associated consequences of abuse, violence, low confidence, suicide, depression and mental health issues that can also occur imminently. He expressed his opinion that professionals should be aware of these social feeds to help support and carry out preventative work in addressing these problems. The need to have an effective training and monitoring system in place starting from homes to schools will go a long way in both establishing a preventative approach, as well as supporting the parents and children who are victims.

The former CPHVA president Carrie Grant headed a lively session on leadership: delegates loved the singing, in particular through which Carrie demonstrated the art of leadership that left everyone on a high note.

Other speakers included Deidre Webb updating on the progress made by the NI Family Nurse Partnership, and Mary Duggan who presented on the perinatal mental health joint project by the NSPCC, Unite-CPHVA and the RCM, highlighting the invaluable contributions of HVs and the need for investment. Research papers were delivered by doctorate student Catherine Lowenhoff on postnatal depression, and Dr Nicola Doherty on maternal wellbeing, particularly when a baby is born early. To wrap up, lead Unite officers Kevin McAdam and Ethel Rodrigues spoke on the industrial and professional aspects of union work.

Delegate feedback has been positive and the regional committee is looking forward to organising the 2019 conference. Unite-CPHVA would like to thank all those who contributed to the success of the event, including Donal O’Cofaigh (Unite Media).

Janet Taylor, chair, CPHVA executive


Jade Batten
My experience of the Unite-CPHVA 2018 annual professional conference

At 18 I was a single parent preparing to have my first child when I was introduced to the Family Nurse Partnership. Over the next two and a half years the role it played in my family’s future is one I could not have imagined. It’s now eight years later and I am a newly qualified health visitor lucky enough to have received the MacQueen Bursary award to attend the conference.

Attending conference was an excellent opportunity to network, enhance my practice, learn from professionals and return back to my practice area with ideas that can change children’s lived experiences. At a time when we are hearing about budget cuts, privatisation and more children at risk of significant harm, it is vital that we take every opportunity to come together as professionals to share best practice and ways in which children can thrive in times of austerity.

Resilience was a common theme threaded throughout the two days. The need to be resilient is high on managers’ agendas, however, the conference demonstrated that there are various interpretations of what being resilient means: it’s not just the responsibility 
of the individual, it’s also the responsibility of the organisation to promote a positive culture where professionals have job satisfaction, a supportive team, low emotional exhaustion and high-quality supervision. Only when these factors are present can a workforce become truly resilient.

Overall, the conference was an excellent opportunity to meet with passionate, resilient and highly motivated professionals who are using past experiences, their voice and their role to influence families’ futures just like my wonderful family nurse did for me. We are a fabulous workforce 
who work hard for the families in our care and the conference provided plenty of opportunities to see that.

Jade Batten, health visitor, Swindon Borough Council Mary Seacole award winners and scholars 2018-19


Mary Seacole award winners and scholars 2018-19

The valuable contribution made by individual nurses to the health of black and minority ethnic (BME) communities 
was highlighted in October at the annual Mary Seacole Awards.

Allis Rasul Mary Seacole Awards
Leadership awards

Alis Rasul, clinical team leader for health visiting at the Moseley Hall Hospital, Birmingham, won for her project ‘Approachable parenting: a realist evaluation of the health visitor role in co-delivering a culturally sensitive early intervention programme to support the mental health of Muslim families’.  

Obrey Alexis Mary Seacole Awards
Obrey Alexis, senior lecturer at Oxford Brookes University, won for his project ‘A qualitative study examining black African and black Caribbean men’s experiences of prostate cancer and their perceived needs’.


Development awards

Kanta Kumer Mary Seacole Awards
Dr Kanta Kumar, research facilitator at the Institute of Clinical Sciences, University of Birmingham, for ‘Perceptions of Doppler ultrasound scan among black and minority ethnic patients with rheumatoid arthritis’.  


Katie Worley Mary Seacole Awards
Katie Worley, interim public health nursing manager at Public Health Nursing for Slough. Her project was ‘To raise awareness and offer a sound evidence-based approach to the identification and assessment of maternal mental health for Punjabi-speaking mothers within the Slough community’.  


Thomas Currid Mary Seacole Awards
Thomas Currid, programme lead at the School of Health and Social Care, University of Essex was awarded for his project

‘A qualitative exploration of the mental health needs of Irish Travellers in England’.  


Sarah Chitongo Mary Seacole Awards
Sarah Chitongo, technical clinical skills manager at Middlesex University for her project ‘Preventing deaths in high-risk (BME) groups in maternity services’.

Three awardees, who last year received funding for their projects, which they have now completed, were also presented with their certificates and Mary Seacole scholar badge. They were Bertha Ochieng, Faye Bruce and Saeidah Saeidi.