National Nursing Week runs from May 7 to May 13, a week to celebrate the industry that helps thousands of Canadians a day.
National Nursing Week, or NNW, was born in 1971 designated by the International Council of Nurses. It was specifically chosen as May 12 to honor the historical British nurse, Florence Nightingale, as it was her birthday. In 1985, the Canadian Nurses Association rallied with the federal government to start salary and benefits negotiations turning the one day affair into seven. From there, the CNA changed the name from National Nurses Week to National Nursing Week to include an umbrella of jobs, responsibilities and duties the nursing industry performs daily.
"It's a great opportunity to honor the nurses for their dedication to the clients of Drumheller," said acute care nurse, Pricilla Berniko.
This years NNW has a theme that continues to focus on the evolution within the nursing fields, #YesThisIsNursing.
"I think it's a valuable, meaningful profession," explained Berniko. "To be with people during their most vulnerable moments in life, whether they're sick, dying or need further rehab. We provide that support and comfort, we assist them holistically."
Berniko, who is also up for the Employee of the Year Award from the Drumheller Rotary Club, says that bad days do happen, like in any job, but being able to be there and try to make things better always brightens her day.
"I love the clients. I care about people and enjoy meeting them where they're at in their life," she continued. "Helping empower them and find meaning within their experience, connecting with them and doing for them when they are unable to do for themselves. I just value them."