This article originally appeared on the SameYou website. Earlier this year, SameYou collaborated with Nursing Now on the Nightingale Challenge Global Solutions Initiative.
Emmanuella, Adelaide, Lawrence and Stephanoupolos are all final-year student nurses at the University of Ghana School of Nursing & Midwifery. We spoke to them to find out more about them and what inspired them to enter the Nightingale Challenge Global Solutions Initiative.
SameYou: Congratulations to you all for winning the very first NCGSI! Tell us what made want to you pursue a career in nursing?
Emmanuella: Before entering nursing school, I was amazed by the contribution of nurses to health promotion. It was explicitly clear nursing was the right path for me.
Adelaide: Becoming a nurse meant I could make a difference in the lives of individuals, families and communities. Even as a student nurse, I find myself making some of these positive difference during clinical placements and community health nursing projects. I would love to become a nurse innovator someday and a singer on the side.
Lawrence: I have always had an interest in the health sciences and the role of health workers in the rendering of care to ailing individuals. I am also very enthusiastic about research and problem-solving. Being passionate about the health and wellbeing of others, I hope to work in the clinical setting after my first degree, rendering care to those in need of it whilst using my skills and knowledge to promote quality improvement.
Stephanopoulos: I took interest in nursing when I was in Senior High School. I saw how nurses working at the student infirmary cared for my colleagues. I asked them questions concerning nursing and I was inspired by their answers. Currently, I have a year more to go and after graduation, I hope to start working in a clinical facility rendering care to people in my community.
SameYou: Nursing is certainly a passion for all of you and it is clear to see how such a strong solution was created by you as a group. What inspired you to enter the challenge?
Emmanuella: I enjoy working in a team because I believe different viewpoints can help in finding solutions I might not think of on my own. For one thing, my teammates and I were all about making a difference and we were particularly drawn together by our interest in brain injury rehabilitation due to personal experiences. The challenge intrigued us and inspired us to participate as a team.
Adelaide: I joined our team because of how challenging accessing neurorehabilitation services was when my grandmother suffered a stroke in 2006. The idea that we could design a support program for individuals and families who are having a similar experience as my grandmother was a huge motivation.
Lawrence: I was inspired to join the group to take on the challenge because of the number of individuals I have ever come into contact with, who had brain injuries in the past but had not made a full recovery due to inadequate rehabilitation services. The hope that our submission could enact an improvement inspired my participation.
Stephanopoulos: I gathered the team because I believed we all had different insights which were very relevant in approaching this challenge. The whole team had some zeal and loved the idea of identifying problems that threaten neurorehabilitation in Ghana and beyond. This connected us.
SameYou: How did you feel when you heard the news that you had won this challenge?
Stephanopoulos: As a team, we were not expecting to win this challenge. We were quite proud of ourselves when we submitted our concept notes. To us, that was a win. The congratulatory email came as an absolute surprise. It was unbelievable and thrilling.
Emmanuella: The news was a wonderful exciting surprise. I am grateful to NursingNow and SameYou for the opportunity presented to us.
Lawrence: I was elated by the news when I heard we had won the challenge because I honestly was not expecting the win even though we had put our all into the solution. I also felt a sense of accomplishment as our ideas had been judged as the best and would go on to further better the lives of individuals recovering from brain injury.
SameYou: What are your next steps?
Adelaide: We have started consulting stakeholders, including neuro-rehab nurses and community health nurses. We are looking forward to a mentorship with Jenny and would love to see how her shared experience influences our initiative.
Lawrence: We are brainstorming on how best to implement the solution, and going on to pilot the solution, gain more support and touch more lives.
Stephanopoulos: We are still working as a team together with our tutors to identify our best steps in initiating our solution. We are also consulting patients who have acquired brain injury on how to best to carry out our solution. It is going to be challenging but we are determined.
SameYou: What are your long-term hopes for the solution?
Emmanuella: I would love to see our solutions become a reality and in the long run, make neurorehabilitation easily accessible to all at a lower cost.
Adelaide: We hope that this solution will be implemented, will be sustained and will achieve its overall aim. We hope that people who have suffered brain injuries will be able to access and go through a smooth rehab programme at a reduced cost with our solution.
Lawrence: I hope that our solution will be able to proceed without a hitch, aid in the rehabilitation of patients who have suffered brain injuries, and gain recognition so it will be patronized by both health personnel and patients alike.
Stephanopoulos: We are very excited about our solution. We hope we could bring it to life and scale it up. We hope we begin an innovative approach to neurorehabilitation that supports patients more holistically and places them at the centre of care.
SameYou: Thank you and good luck! We are looking forward to working with you to help bring your solution to life.
Look out for more updates from our Nightingale Challenge Global Solutions Initiative winners as we work with them and follow their journey to bring their solution to life.