Cameroon Nurses Association United Kingdom (CNA-UK) had its Annual General Meeting in London held on the 16th August 2015 at the Red House, Roding Lane East, Ilford, London, IG4 5BG from 14:30 to 18:00. The meeting was well attended by some special guests such as a journalist, a teacher an accountant and other professionals. More importantly the meeting was honoured by the presence of Mrs Christiane Happy, Chair lady and founder of the Cameroon Nurses Association United State (CAMNA-USA), Dr Morgan Montio, chair lady of the Cameroon Doctors Association United Kingdom (CAMDOC-UK) and the presence of two of our patrons, Dr Mrs Rosemary Burnley and Dr Mr Samuel Atsungsiri. The meeting was chaired by Mrs Elsie Monju, member and CNA-UK adviser.
The meeting started promptly at 14:30 with a short prayer by Mrs Rose Atah former chair and active member of CNA-UK. The opportunity was given to Mr Romain Ngouabeu, chairperson of CNA-UK to introduce CNA-UK to our guests before highlighting the aims and objectives of the association as specified in the CNA-UK article of association. The president briefed the AGM about some CNA-UK’s achievements since he took over two years ago and also revealed CNA-UK’s areas to be covered in the next two years, before identifying barriers and difficulties encountered by CNA-UK to fulfil its aims and objectives .
Since taking over the leadership of the association two years ago, CAN-UK has grown in strength, membership of the association has increased and a new website launched. The association is now present on social media and has very good working relationship with other associations. A mailing list has been made available to ease communications between registered members. Two gala nights and fund raising were organised and funds were raised enough to fund the provision of an electrophoresis machine which will be donated to a hospital in Cameroon. Cameroonians will benefit from this test free of charge to help reduce and control sickle cell traits and sickle cell disease in the area. The chairperson also appreciated and praised previous efforts made by CNA-UK to provide books and computers in hospitals and nursing schools in Cameroon (click here). CNA-UK has also participated in fund raising aiming to purchase an ambulance in a remote area in Ivory Cost in July 2015 (click here,) and has also participated in a conference in London to raise awareness and reduce the element of stigmatization on HIV sufferers in the community. CNA-UK is currently registered within the Cameroonian embassy in London and permission was given in 2015 by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) to use the term nurses in the name of the association. Further, actions to be carried out and support other associations and charities such as the Great Ormond Hospital and St Joseph’s Hospices in Hackney are to be taken in the nearest future and CNA –UK is actively working to achieve these.
CNA-UK for a Cameroon Diaspora Health Conference (CDHC)
The Cameroon Diaspora Health Conference which was introduced during the AGM, aims to call on all Cameroonians and non Cameroonians in the UK, to discuss health issues affecting individuals in the UK, and also in Cameroon. CNA-UK plan is to work together with CAMDOC-UK, CAMNA-USA, other relevant associations and professionals in the UK to identify some health issues affecting different ethnic minorities in the UK. The CDHC will also be the first platform where health issues especially nursing care in Cameroon will be looked at. Participants will benefit from free health checks involving: blood pressures, blood sugar level, blood cholesterol etc... Advice will be given in relation to healthy dieting, obesity, and the benefit of physical exercise and on how to encourage young children to embark into a nursing or medical career. The CDHC will also be an opportunity to raise awareness on Afro-Caribbean diabetic diet, a project that CAMNA-USA has already started in the USA and which Mrs Christiane Happy had the opportunity to elaborate on during the AGM. The CDHC will end with a gala night and fund raising in celebration of the international nurses’ day 2016. (Florence Nightingale).
CNA-UK for a Cameroon Health Symposium 2017
The first CHS 2017 will take place in Yaounde (Cameroon). CNA-UK, CAMDOC-UK and CAMNA-USA will be calling on all Cameroonian nursing groups and associations to discuss core issues such as nursing care, accountability and responsibility to enhance quality of care in Cameroon. Recommendations from CHS will be presented to the Cameroon Ministry of Health.
The president also announced that CNA-UK’s application for a charitable status was submitted and was awaiting decision from the charity commission.
CNA-UK is currently facing some severe barriers to achieve its aims and objectives. One of the main barriers is finance and CNA-UK aims to organise yearly fund raising to help support some of its projects and objectives. These will be around the international nurse’s day and all members are asked to work actively towards this goal. It is not easy to communicate with other groups in Cameroon as nursing associations in Cameroon are very slow in responding to mails. This is currently being looked into and CNA-UK will continue to empower other Cameroonians association worldwide to work together for a safe nursing practice in Cameroon.
The chair’s presentation was followed by testimonials given by two participants chosen at random who gave their own account of health issues in Cameroon. This followed a group discussion where participants were divided in working groups aiming at identifying ways to assist CNA-UK to achieve its objectives. The participants’ recommendations were also taken into consideration and will be made available in the final report. The meeting ended with light refreshment during which healthy eating was emphasized and healthy diet provided by CNA-UK members.