Joan Durdin Oration applauds nurses

On the eve of International Nurses’ Day, the College of Nursing and Health Sciences is thrilled to announce that Sarah Brown AM will deliver the inaugural Joan Durdin AM Oration at the Alere Function Centre from 5.30pm on Thursday 11 May.

This special event – named in honour of Joan Durdin AM, noting her contributions to nursing studies in South Australia and as foundation lecturer of nursing at Flinders University – was established during celebrations for her 100th birthday in 2022, to showcase the university’s leadership in the nursing discipline.

The event, which aims to stimulate discussions and debate about leadership in nursing and address issues being faced by nurses around the world, provides a platform to showcase inspirational emerging nursing leaders that are associated with Flinders including students, alumni, staff and Academic status holders.

Keynote speaker Sarah Brown AM is CEO of the Western Desert Nganampa Walytja Palyantjaku Tjutaku Aboriginal Corporation, commonly referred to as the Purple House, which was established after Pintupi people and community art centres raised $1 million through an art auction in 2000. Driven by Sarah’s zeal and focus, Purple House now has more than 150 staff operating 18 remote clinics in NT, WA, and SA, as well as a self-contained mobile dialysis unit called the Purple Truck, nine social support services and an aged-care service.

Purple House has been involved in collaborative research projects with Flinders University and some student placements.

Sarah Brown was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia, and received a Convocation Medal from Flinders University in 2020, for her outstanding contribution to community health, remote area nursing and the advancement of independent Aboriginal community-controlled health initiatives.

In addition to Sarah Brown’s address – “The challenges and joys of being a disrupter: How nurses can help change the world (or at least their little bit of it)” – the event will include a discussion by panellists including SA Chief Nurse and Midwife, Jenny Hurley.

The event will also announce the College of Nursing and Health Sciences Nursing Leadership Mentoring Program, in honour of Joan Durdin AM. The initial mentoring program will match six mentor and mentee pairs, offering a value-add to enhance students’ clinical leadership skills by giving them access to nurse leaders in a similar professional setting.

For more details about the 11 May oration and to register for tickets (which close at midnight on Tuesday 9 May), click here.

Further nursing celebrations

The Riverland first-year nursing cohort.

In other activities that celebrate International Nurses’ Day, the South Australian Nursing and Midwifery Excellence Awards that recognise and celebrate the significant contribution that nurses and midwives make to the healthcare outcomes of the broader South Australian community will be announced at a Gala Dinner at the Adelaide Convention Centre on Friday 12 May.

CareSearch will publish an interesting story on nurse retention within its In Focus article series, CNHS staff will be attending a breakfast event at the Sturt Campus to mark International Nurses day – and the first-year cohort of nursing students at Flinders University’s Riverland campus got in early with a group celebration on Tuesday.

Professor Tiffany Conroy, Deputy Dean for Nursing Leadership and Innovation and the Academic Lead for Nursing in the College of Nursing and Health Sciences, says the global recognition day provides a chance to thank everyone in our amazing Flinders nursing team. “We have so much to be thankful for – for giving back to those who will care for patients, change policies, and advocate for healthcare,” says Professor Conroy. “For being mindful of the immense responsibility of preparing students to enter our amazing profession with the knowledge, skillset, and confidence needed to make a difference in this field for years to come.

“For investing in your future colleagues to ensure that quality, dedicated, and compassionate providers are represented on the frontlines of healthcare. For prioritising the fundamental care needs of everyone in each caring encounter. And for researching, advocating for and implementing the evidence to support care that provides the best outcomes for all.”





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