Tameside nurses win RCN outstanding contribution awards during Black History Month celebrations
16 October 2020

Three Tameside nursing professionals have won a Royal College of Nursing award to mark their outstanding contribution to the equality, diversity and inclusion agenda and the experience of BAME service users and staff across the health and social care sector.

The awards form part of the RCN North West’s annual event to celebrate the rich history and contribution of BAME nursing staff across our region and in the NHS and Social Care. This year’s theme is ‘Power, Voice and Influence and took place virtually on Thursday celebrating, empowering and embracing the talents of the black, Asian and minority ethnic workforce in health and social care across the North West.

Florance Makurira, Senior Mental Health Practitioner and A&E Mental Health Liaison at Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust, and Busi Ndlovu and Maqsood Bibi, both nurses at Tameside & Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust have all won awards.

Florance Makuira, originally from Zimbabwe, has worked tirelessly to raise awareness of mental health issues in the BAME community.

Clare Parker, executive director of nursing at Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are all enormously proud of Florance’s achievement and this award is greatly deserved. Throughout the COVID pandemic she has continued to work on the frontline as a senior mental health nurse in A&E – providing outstanding care and support for our patients.”

In the midst a global pandemic and in an atmosphere of fear and anxiety for BAME staff in particular, both Busi and Maqsood have gone above and beyond to support their colleagues.

Peter Weller, Executive Director of Nursing and Integrated Governance at Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust said, “This a fabulous news and a richly deserved award for two outstanding members of our nursing family.  This year has provided challenges like no other and both Busi and Maqsood have worked tirelessly and relentlessly, in a rapidly changing environment, to support both their colleagues and their patients.”

This year’s winners work across a range of settings including in hospitals and out in the community, and in clinical and non clinical areas such as governance, general nursing and mental health. They were recognised for a variety of reasons including their commitment to ensure the BAME agenda is heard nationally, raising awareness of mental health in the BAME community, supporting newly recruited nurses from the BAME workforce through the HR process.

Black History Month is an opportunity to recognise and celebrate the outstanding contribution of nursing staff from BAME backgrounds who work in health and social care across the region.

Congratulating the winners, Estephanie Dunn, Regional Director of the Royal College of Nursing in the North West said: “Our Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic nursing community play a vital role in caring for people in our region who need it most.  The commitment and professionalism shown by our award winners to promote equality and diversity across their organisations is essential to improving the lived experience of BAME staff. This award celebrates the unique contribution that our BAME nursing community makes across the North West.  

“However, we cannot turn a blind eye to the fact that there is still a huge amount of work to do to ensure our nursing colleagues from BAME backgrounds have the same opportunities as others.  RCN North West is committed to taking a leading role in promoting the voice of the BAME nursing community and challenging employers where poor practice exists.”