Creating a new nursing association in BC

Creating a new nursing association in BC

For the past six  months I have been working as project manager for the Association of Registered Nurses of British Columbia (ARNBC). My role is to support the work of the Board of Directors in creating a professional organization for registered nurses in the province.

The goal is to establish a new organization that will bring the perspectives of BC nurses to health and social policy issues. Once fully established, the new association will carry out strategies to advance the role of the nursing profession and collaborate with other nursing and health organizations provincially and nationally.

The ARNBC and the Canadian Nurses Association have signed a one-year agreement to work together on initiatives that will contribute to  building our new association. We are hosting a cross-country tour to BC by a CNA delegation in December and we’re planning a province-wide consultation process with nurses that will be launched in January. It is an exciting time in the history of nursing in BC.

Members of the ARNBC Board are reaching out through engagement with nurses at meetings, conferences and at schools of nursing this fall. We’re using our blog to post opinions and commentary on topical issues including the new Nurse-Family Partnership Program and a fascinating background piece on Insite, Vancouver’s supervised injection site.

Please visit the ARNBC website for updates, new blog posts and links to our social media sites.


Cultural Safety Curriculum Project: A New Publication

Cultural Safety Curriculum Project: A New Publication

Cultural safety workshop 2010

Last year I worked with faculty members at Thompson Rivers University (TRU) School of Nursing in Kamloops, British Columbia on a project to incorporate concepts of cultural safety into their nursing program. This project drew on the Cultural Safety Curriculum Framework developed by the Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada in conjunction with the Canadian Nurses Association and the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing in 2009.

At a two-day gathering in March 2010, the School of Nursing brought together a dynamic mix of students, practitioners, community partners and faculty to explore the curriculum framework. The session provided an opportunity to work with elements of the framework by identifying supports needed for students and faculty and by creating exemplars for future learning experiences at TRU. The exemplars included involving Elders in courses, a community immersion practicum, learning activities on residential school history and faculty immersion in rural and remote First Nations communities.

Star Mahara, Susan Duncan, Joanne Brown and Nora Whyte described this process and outlined the exemplars in an article that is now available online in the International Journal of Nursing Education Scholarship, published by Berkeley Electronic Press. Our article also discusses the development of an advocacy statement in support of Aboriginal students within the School of Nursing and the university community as a whole.

After reviewing the relevant literature on this topic and writing drafts of the manuscript, we were delighted to receive word that it was accepted for publication following a peer review process. Please find our article, “It Takes a Community to Raise a Nurse: Educating for Culturally Safe Practice with Aboriginal Peoples”, at