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Salute to our Windrush generation

SALUTE: Winners and special guests at the first Windrush Nurses and Beyond Foundation awards. All Pics: Alastair Fyfe

THEY CAME in the 1940s, 50s and 60s and overcame bitter conditions and racism to change the National Health Service for the better.

Recently, the Windrush Nurses and Beyond Foundation honoured some of these hard workers for their achievement and dedication.

Eight inspiring individuals, some pioneers and other young innovators, were recognised during the awards, the first of what is to become a yearly event.

Co-founder Sandi Phillips told The Voice: “The Foundation truly believes that honouring those individuals who came from the Caribbean and the African continent, and have contributed for over 60 years to the NHS was long overdue."

“Our Awards not only recognised clinical excellence in several fields, it also gave us an opportunity to shine a light on future inspirational role models.”
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And the winners are:

Henrietta Millicent Campbell

Overall Contribution to the Nursing Profession, an award sponsored by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN).

This Jamaican-born nurse came to the UK by boat in 1951.

In her decades in health care, Campbell has worked as a senior midwife in many London teaching hospitals, as a labour ward sister and as an midwifery sister.

A former chair of the Royal College of Midwives, she now continues mentoring and developing staff. She is currently vice president of the Royal British Nurses Association where she helps disabled nurses in financial difficulties.

She was nominated because she has shown ‘care and devotion not only to patients but also her staff.’
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Jamie Clarke


INSPIRING: Jamie Clarke receives his Voice Young Innovator award from MP Diane Abbott, Shadow Public Health Minister.

Young Innovator Award - Sponsored by The Voice newspaper.

Clarke has not only overcome dyslexia and dyspraxia (coordination challenges) to pursue a medical degree but he also saved his father’s life earlier this year.

He came home one day from church and noticed his father was not well. He soon recognised his dad was having a stroke and called for help to put him into his car and drove him to the nearest hospital, where his father got emergency treatment and his life was saved.

Clarke, who in 2011 studied for a three-year degree in Neuroscience in one year, has used his medical skills to help others, whether he is here in the UK or volunteering in Mexico, where he was elected to do basic procedures, X-rays, CT scans and teaching English to doctors.

Among his other achievements are being a London 2012 ambassador and providing community service at Fun Fizzical, a centre for disabled children that works to get them into sports to help with their movement and coordination.
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Verna Springer

The Advancement in Midwifery, sponsored by Virgin Airways and SNT Travel.

Springer, a dedicated midwife dubbed an exemplary role model by colleagues, set up a high dependency unit (for people who require more intensive nursing care than can be provided on a ward) and worked to improve policies to care for women requiring high levels of individualised midwifery care.

Loved and respected by her colleagues, she also became the first high dpendency unit manager, later becoming a labour ward manager responsible for over 5,000 births per year.
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Avis Williams-McKoy

The Dr. Nola Ishmael Award for Services towards the Improvement of Children’s Health.

Having specialised in the field of child protection since 1995, she is employed as a nurse consultant and has worked on all aspects of child protection.

She has also raised awareness by designing and delivering training packages to promote the health and welfare of black and ethnic minority children and their parents.
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Suresh Rambaran

The Winifred Scott Award Services towards the Advancement of African-Caribbean Health.

With a career dating back to 1972, Rambaran has made a key difference in the area of oncology (cancer) nursing care and helping to develop services for patients.

These include from ethnic foods, translating hospital drug sheets to changes in teaching practices to ensure staff understood differences in customs, culture and religious practice.

He also helped form the Trinidad and Tobago Allied Health Care Professional Society and is founder of a Black and Ethnic Minority (BME) Working Committee at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London.
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Lucretia Riley

Sharon Dennis Award for Services towards Mental Health Development Improvement.

A mental health practitioner with a background in nursing, Riley has made a difference to mental health care through helping to pioneer programmes such as the first community psychiatric nursing service in Haringey, north London.

She also took a lead role in the establishment and development of the first GP Counselling Services for people with mental health problems in the district.
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Dr. Neslyn Watson-Drueé

Services towards Nursing Innovation.

A qualified midwife, Watson-Drueé established the Mary Seacole Leadership Awards through the RCN, helping to pay tribute to the legendary Jamaican nurse, while recognising ongoing work to improve healthcare in ethnic minority communities.

A former health visitor, she has been a lecturer, business psychologist and international platform speaker at the European Parliament. Currently a trainer and a member of the International Women’s Forum, she is also working to increase diversity in public appointments, urging people from all backgrounds to apply for positions on public boards.
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Alice Chinewaru

Shirla Philogene Award International Development.

Born in Zimbabwe, Chinewaru came to study in England. She qualified in 1994, and has worked with patients who were elderly, suffering from cardiac respiratory cancer and orthopaedic conditions at Mount Vernon Hospital.

She is also helping improve family futures through the Family Nurse Partnership, which came to the UK from the United States in 2007.

The programme connects nurses with young mothers under the age of 20. The nurses teach them parenting skills, childcare, budgeting and accessing education courses.

US research shows families who benefit improve their lives, with children often becoming the first in their families to go to university.

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