An Honour to Meet ICN’s
Dr. Frances Hughes
Our first distinguished Geneva meeting was with Dr. Frances Hughes — the newly appointed CEO of the International Council of Nurses (ICN) — and some of her staff. Our discussion ranged across Phalakshi’s briefing of current Indian nursing challenges and our sharing of NIGH’s history and proposed plans for the Year 2020 Nightingale Bicentenary. Dr. Hughes also provided us with an illuminating review of her work, as the first ICN CEO to be appointed from the Southern Hemisphere. Her sharings highlighted her service as Chief Nursing Officer of New Zealand, and of the Australian state of Queensland and her Regional work with the World Health Organization (WHO) to understand and promote the dynamics of health care across many of the remote islands of the South Pacific.
Missing Meeting with
We were sorry to miss the chance to meet, this time, with Mwansa Nkowane — the ‘Focal Point for Nursing & Midwifery’ — at the Healthcare Workforce Department of the World Health Organization (WHO). This photo above remembers and appreciates our 2014 visit to Geneva and WHO — showing us standing on each side of Mwansa — on the right — with Dr. Prakin Suchaxaya on the left — the Regional Nursing Officer at the WHO SEARO Office in New Delhi.
Once Again at WHO with Tomas Allen
Although we missed meeting with Mwansa — who was on travel-duty when we were in Geneva in 2016 — we enjoyed the wonderful opportunity to meet again with Tomas Allen WHO’s Librarian. Tomas regularly welcomes visitors and researchers from everywhere around the world, assisting them to access WHO’s extensive collections books and publications and to research an array of issues related to health and health development.
On the day we were there, Tomas briefed us about the latest findings related to the Zika virus epidemic and its risks. We are always very happy to visit with Tomas, our good friend and colleague, whose hometown is Roblin, Manitoba, the rural village where Deva-Marie's husband and our NIGH colleague — Wayne Kines — was also born!
With Cyril Ritchie — President of CoNGO — The Congress of NGOs in Relationship with the United Nations
We also enjoyed the pleasure of dinner treated us by our long-time friend and advisor, Cyril Ritchie, who is based in Geneva as President of 'CoNGO.'
Since before NIGH was formally established in 2004 — and during all our years since then — Cyril has served on NIGH’s Board of Directors and advised us, as we have grown — particularly on our emerging participation in ‘global civil society’ — as an official NGO working with the United Nations to promote global goals.
With Tony Murdoch at 'HUG'
We also had the great opportunity to visit the Hospitaux Universitaires de Geneve (HUG) and meet with Marie-Jose Roulin, the Assistant Director of Nurses there. This meeting became an excellent co-briefing — between Phalakshi and Marie-Jose — about the challenges and joys of serving in hospital leadership through these roles. Despite the obvious differences between this hospital in Switzerland and Phalakshi's hospital in India, we also noted many similarities and a common ground of care and concern — of nurses — for the health of peoples in Geneva and in Mumbai.
Our 'host' for this meeting was our friend, Geneva-based Tony Murdoch, who had earlier served as HUG's Director of Communications, as well as in similar roles at the International Red Cross and the International Public Relations Association (IPRA). After our meeting with Marie-Jose, Tony took some extra time to review NIGH's initial plans to celebrate the 2020 Nightingale Bicentenary and to share some timely 'PR' advice with us!
All above photos are from NIGH’s archives and Phakakshi Manjrekar’s camera.