BY MAHADEV DESAI
Atlanta, GA, June 9, 2016: Georgia Indian Nurses Association (GINA) celebrated Nurses’ Week at St. Thomas Orthodox Church, Lilburn on Friday April 29, 2016. The well attended event was full of joy and camaraderie. The program started with a small prayer led by Fr. Mathew Elayadathamadam, and his blessing and greetings for all nurses. Shirley Parayil and Deepthy Varghese emceed the program with great energy and enthusiasm and kept the crowd engaged and entertained.
Lighting of the “Nilavilakku”- traditional lamp used commonly in Kerala, was done by Fr. Mathew, chief guest Carolyn Holder, GINA president Lilly Anickat ex-GINA president, Mary Jose and the executive committee members of GINA. GINA general body members sang the Indian National anthem followed by USnational anthem sung by Jasmine Anickat. Lilly Anickat welcomed honored guests, nurses and their family, and sponsors of the event. She encouraged nurses to take full advantage of the association’s programs such as networking, professional and leadership development, CPR training, education for CE credits, volunteering opportunities, etc. She also invited nurses and nursing students to the 5th biannual education conference of NAINA-National Association of Indian Nurses of America in Chicagoon October 21 and 22nd.
The founder and former president of GINA, Mary Jose, introduced the chief guest Carolyn Holder MN, APRN-BC, CCRN, CCNS, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Critical Care/ Pulmonary at Emory university hospital. Holder did a presentation on the theme of this year’s Nurses week “Culture of Safety -It starts with you”. She pointed out that a culture of safety fosters transparency, accountability and brings better results. She emphasized the importance of team work and effective communication for patient safety. It was very informative talk, interesting not only to nurses but also to their families and guests who were part of the audience.
The emcees, invited nurses one-by-one to the stage, through the “Red-Carpet” by holding candle lights. And Fr. Mathew and Holder acknowledged each nurse for their services by giving roses as a token of appreciation. GINA’s award committee recognized nurses by presenting certificates to those who had made professional advancements and achievements. Vidya Kanagaraj won the “GINA Nurse of the Year” award for her excellent contributions to GINA, community, her patients and their families, and nursing profession. Allen Shpigel from Shpigel Financial Group, Prakash Joseph from GAMA, Vandana Thakkar from Softpath systems and Sheela Pothumana from Clinical Laboratory Services made felicitation speeches and recognized nurses for their service and support in the community.
Lisa Pius and Jasmine Anickat sang beautiful songs dedicating it to all nurses. Suja Moonjeli surprised everyone by her amazing solo dance performance. Sneha Cletus and group performed an enthralling dance which elicited a cheerful applause from the audience. The attendees also much enjoyed Meena Joseph’s Hindi song. Jecy Mathew, the secretary of GINA, gave the vote of thanks for the support and generosity of those who had participated in the celebration and to the performers. The GINA nurse’s day celebration was concluded with NAINA’s 5th Biennial National Conference registration kick off and a delicious dinner.