Working in health can be both rewarding and challenging. We often find ourselves taking inspiration from our colleagues and the patients with whom we come into contact. On International Women’s Day, we’d like to talk about some of the women in health who have inspired us.
First we’d like to mention Gail O’Brien, who joined Lifehouse this year as patient advocate. Gail’s experiences through the illness of her late husband Chris O’Brien’s illness over a period of two-and-a-half years taught her much from the perspective of the patient and carer. The subsequent serious illnesses of two of her children also left lasting impressions that she has brought to the role. Gail’s generous and caring spirit is a wonderful example to us, she is a woman to learn from!
We’d like to look back on female trailblazers in medicine, like Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing, Marie Curie who won the Nobel Prize twice for her pioneering work in radiation therapy, and Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, the first Englishwoman to qualify as a surgeon. These women paved the way for our female nurses and doctors and they live on today as role models for girls considering a career in health.
Looking outwards to our community, we are proud of all our generous supporters. But today we especially celebrate those women who found no fundraising target was too high, no run too far, no challenge too scary or muddy. They push themselves to the limits to run Half Marathons; freefall from 14,000ft, or bravely shave their locks. We are indebted to them all for their continued support through sunshine and mud – forever focussed on the one goal – to help those in need and make a real difference to our patients and the future of cancer care.
Most of all, we want to recognise the outstanding women that work here. In particular our dedicated, professional and caring female nurses, the women in our management team and on the board and the many female surgeons, specialists, radiation therapists and researchers.