Below, watch a spoken-word performance by poet Julia Pileggi inspired by the stories of nurses from across PHSA.
Keep reading for personal stories from nurses at Heartwood Centre for Women, a residential treatment centre for adult women with substance use disorders and mental health issues.
"My passion for women-centred care, mental health advocacy and witnessing personal growth are reasons why I love working at Heartwood. Seeing women transition from their first day here to their last and witnessing the growth and change that happens is incredibly moving. Reminding myself of that and the good work we do helps on those challenging days."
"Earlier in my career, I worked with women who had experienced physical violence and sexual assault. That's where my passion for women's health, trauma, and mental wellness started. It became very obvious to me that there is a connection between pain, suffering and addiction. As a psychiatric nurse at Heartwood, I have the privilege of witnessing incredible strength and resilience of these women daily. Sometimes a small glimpse into someone's story is enough to begin to understand how someone gets intertwined in addiction. Seeing clients do the work and being part of their recovery journey is an incredible honour, and probably the most rewarding part of working at Heartwood."
"I am forever grateful to be welcomed into the lives of women who have overcome more obstacles then I could ever imagine. I get to be part of their new beginning in their recovery and be trusted to offer support to them. Each client is unique and challenges me to learn about different styles of nursing. Through medical interventions and supportive conversations, no day is the same. My theory in practice is to use a strengths-based approach because I believe that every individual I work with has the resilience to overcome any obstacle in life, and that brings me fulfilment as a nurse at Heartwood. I value and respect all the stories I hear, and I feel honoured to be part of each and every client's journey."