As a World Youth International Team Leader, Toni manages the Nurses In Action teams on the ground in Kenya and Nepal, ensuring the Volunteer placements are going along smoothly and that the Volunteers have the opportunity to help make a difference bringing professional and quality healthcare to those who need it most. Toni’s guidance and leadership on various Nurses in Action programs during 2019 has been amazing and her efforts are so much appreciated by the rest of the team, the Volunteers, and the communities she has worked within.
Let’s get to know Toni!
How did you come to be involved in World Youth International?
I had been a Registered Nurse for only two years when a friend of mine discovered World Youth International through an online search. We spoke about doing the program together the following year. In August 2018 myself and two friends completed the Nurses In Action program in Kenya and it reminded me of why I chose Nursing as a career. I felt happy and had a drive to do more for others. After my return home, I was asked to be a Team Leader for the June and August program in Kenya, as well as the October program in Nepal.
What does it mean to you to be a nurse?
Being a Nurse to me, is to demonstrate care, compassion, respect, kindness, dignity and compassion so that you are trusted by those who are most vulnerable. It’s about making a positive difference.
What was the most memorable experience on the program that you will cherish forever?
We held a health camp in a rural village in Nepal. One gentleman who presented looked to have fractured his arm and was obviously distressed. We had him seen to quite quickly to ensure he received pain relief and a referral for imaging at the closest hospital facility. Even in his discomfort and through tears, he made sure to thank and shake the hand of each of the members of our team to demonstrate his profuse gratitude for our being there that day. It was so sincere, it made me tear up myself, but was so heartwarming!
What was the most difficult challenge you experienced during your program?
The poor availability of resources was hard to accept, especially when compared to what we have access to as Nurses and patients in Australian hospitals. It was amazing to see how the Nurses and Doctors in Kenya and Nepal made the most of what they had to benefit the most amount of people.
What is most important to you?
My friends and family are important to me - their support is everything! I am also always trying to expand my skills and knowledge in my profession. I will start my Bachelor of Midwifery in 2020 and will complete my Graduate Certificate in Acute Care Nursing soon too.
What are 3 to 5 most important things you brought with you on your Nurses In Action program that you couldn't go without?
Without a doubt,
- birkenstock shoes
- cross body bag
- card game or bananagram (keeps the laughs flowing!)
- open mindset, without fixed ideas or expectations of the program or country
Thank you Toni - we here at World Youth International wish you all the best with your studies and look forward to working with you again. You too can be involved in the Nurses in Action program. Learn More!