International Nurses Day is celebrated annually on 12th May to honor the contributions of nurses worldwide. This date marks the birth of Florence Nightingale in 1820, the founder of modern nursing. The day recognizes the essential role nurses play in healthcare systems globally.

In New Zealand, the significance of this day extended throughout May. Volunteers from the Rapid Relief Team (RRT) highlighted the invaluable contributions of nurses, midwives, and hospital staff to the national healthcare system by providing them with a free BBQ meal. Throughout May, RRT hosted 22 International Nurses Day events at hospitals across the country, from Kaitaia to Invercargill. A total of 460 RRT volunteers generously gave their time to support these events, providing over 17,500 meals to the dedicated nurses, midwives, and hospital staff.

"Hi, I would just like to thank your Christchurch team who supplied the nurses and HCA with breakfast and lunch today at Christchurch Hospital. The team was absolutely amazing and the food was top notch. Everyone in the department I work in (Operating Theatre) had smiles on their faces and had nothing but compliments. It was really nice and a very special thing you did for all of us after the hard few years and the many traumatic events Christchurch has had to deal with. God bless you and all your team for doing a wonderful job today. Thanks again ❤️❤️"

Operating Theatre Staff Member

Christchurch Hospital

This compassionate initiative was part of a global effort. In 2024, 1,126 RRT volunteers served 41,500 meals across 10 countries to support International Nurses Day. These efforts underscore the collective gratitude and appreciation for the selfless work and tireless dedication of healthcare professionals worldwide.

"Thank you so so much for appreciating us! We had amazing food, amazing coffee and best of all it felt so good to be appreciated!!! Thank you for braving the freezing temperatures serving us today. Truly amazing!"


Christchurch Hospital

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