Let’s talk about: “Building Bridges – Professional growth for Pacific Mental Health Nurses”
Talanoa is a networking forum that was established by the CMH Pacific Nursing and Midwifery Leaders Group in 2011. The purpose of Talanoa is for nurses, midwives, students and health workers to present, share, discuss and celebrate Pacific nursing and midwifery initiatives. The Talanoa forum has evolved into an effective vehicle for clinical and cultural support and networking for staff and students in a supportive environment.
On 14th of March 2013, a Talanoa forum was hosted by the Pacific mental health nurses and a range of presentations were delivered by Pacific mental health nurses. Eighty people attended the forum held in the Ko Awatea lecture theatre with over 50% of attendees being student nurses from the MIT nursing degree programmes.
The theme for the day was “Building bridges – Professional growth for Pacific mental health nurses”. Nursing presenters working in a range of different mental health services in Counties Manukau talked about their role in building bridges between Pacific clients, clinicians and the services they worked for across the hospital and the community. Presenters gave examples of how they make a difference to clients and families with appropriate clinical and holistic cultural skills which have resulted in positive outcomes, particularly for the clients and their families, through the work they are very passionate about doing.
The following is a summation of each presentation.
Pacific Nurse Perspective as New Graduate
Manu is of Tongan ethnicity and a New Graduate Nurse who is currently working in Tiaho Mai. His experiences in choosing this career pathway is humbling and gives a greater understanding of what it was like from the class room at Manukau Institute of Technology to being a nurse in the hospital and community setting and overcoming many challenges in his pursuit to become a registered nurse. The Pacific community and Mental Health Services are fortunate to have a dedicated and committed male nurse like Manu who expresses enthusiasm and passion in his work.
Three young ladies inspired the audience with their presented stories about their experience working with Pacific young people and their families and how their personal experiences with mental health had an impact on their decision to work as nurses in mental health. The key aim of their service is to provide Pasifika youth and their families with a positive experience of Mental Health Services and reduce barriers that prevent Pasifika families from accessing treatment in order to improve accessibility to their service, improve relationships and improve outcomes for Pasifika clients.
Community Mental Health Centres
As Pacific nurses working in a mainstream community team it is about building bridges and utilising holistic cultural skills with clients and their families. For the Intensive care team it is the provision of intensive support for Pacific clients under the Mental Health Act, Forensic and Complex Mental Health needs. This brings a new perspective to how Pacific nurses work with Pacific clients accessing these services.
Provides intensive or complex 24 hour mental health assessment and/or treatment in a safe environment. Pacific nurses in Tiaho Mai provide culturally appropriate, holistic care as part of an overall continuum that includes a range of acute treatment options.
This service was the pioneering service that led the way for other Pacific mental health services being established in Counties Manukau. Faleola primarily work in as an ethnic specific team providing mental health services for Pacific adults from 18 to 65. The team provides culturally appropriate approaches when working with Tagata Ola and their families. It is based on the established Pacific family models that is ethnic specific and the staff have a greater understanding from a nursing perspective, understanding the Pacific language, approaches and its nuances.
The next Talanoa will be held in Ko Awatea on 16th May 2013 as part of the international nursing and midwifery celebrations where we will be celebrating Pacific nurses, midwives and students.