Philippine Nurses Association Of Metro DC (PNAMDC) 4115

Philippine Nurses Association Of Metro DC (PNAMDC)


Organization provides Filipino-American nurses opportunities for increased resiliency

430cc95d55c1479f4bec8371885593b5-huge-pnWe are pleased to highlight the Philippine Nurses Association of Metro DC (PNAMDC), an exceptional Healthy Nurse, Healthy Nation™ (HNHN) Champion Partner.

Resiliency. That’s the trait the PNAMDC has been working to strengthen among its members over the past 2 years.

All its activities and events come together to reinforce resiliency among members. There’s no question the pandemic has led to serious burnout and stress among nurses of all ages and ethnicities. Dedicated to Filipino-American Nurses in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, PNAMDC promotes and facilitates education and evidence-based programs to help their members.

One of its most recent and highly successful (and popular) initiative was its 11-week STEPS Challenge. The organization’s Health & Wellness Committee set up a fun competition to encourage members to increase their steps each day. People of all ages share their step counts and pictures of their daily walk in a group chat. People’s posts have served as inspiration and a competitive push to get everyone moving.

“There is so much power that can be achieved in our approach to collective healing and resiliency as a community through simple ways,” said Lourdes Careaga, Wellness Committee Chair for PNAMDC. “We all just need to muster the courage to take the first step.”

While the STEPS Challenge is mostly virtual, the group gets together every few weeks to walk in person, connect, and encourage each other.

PNAMDC also provides opportunities for members to participate in virtual workouts. Now that COVID-19 restrictions have loosened, the organization is offering more workouts in-person, like Polynesian dance classes. If members can’t attend in person, they’re always welcome to join virtually.

Comradery in Faith
PNAMDC also hosts events and activities grounded in a common faith, allowing members to bond in more ways than one. Spirituality is a major motivator for resiliency. With most Filipinos being devout Catholics, PNAMDC offers nightly novenas (Christian devotional prayers) where members pray the rosary together.

“The association started it in 2020 to help members cope with the pandemic,” said President-Elect Christine Pabico, PhD, RN, NE-BC, FAAN. “Now, devotions go beyond the pandemic — PNAMDC is still doing it because it helps with everyone’s well-being.”

Support for Nurses, No Matter the Circumstances
During the unprecedented past 2 years, a heavy weight was placed on the shoulders of nurses across the country. PNAMDC saw this and immediately upped their engagement and outreach efforts. With food drives, vaccination clinics, and several other initiatives, PNAMDC stayed focused on positive, proactive representation to the public. And nurses took notice — membership in the organization doubled in the second half of 2021 alone.

The organization also launched virtual peer-to-peer support groups. The meetings are small and informal, and all members are invited to attend.

“As Filipino nurses, we want to identify ourselves as being resilient,” said Christine. “We realized the hardest thing is getting people to sign up [for the support groups]. They think, ‘I don’t need that.’”

Once in the group, however, that thinking usually changes.

“It seemed like everyone shed some tears listening to others’ stories,” said Christine. “It provides people with a safe place to open up.”

Looking Into the Future
PNAMDC is always seeking new ways to provide more of what its members need. All of its offerings to members are based on what they have shared with the association through surveys. This way, members are able to tell PNAMDC what they want and how they are willing to participate.

In addition to everything mentioned above, the organization is expanding its Heal the Healers Program, which fosters the health and wellness of healthcare workers of Asian descent. The program includes a Well-Being Webinar series, and it will spotlight the topic of culinary medicine in 2022.

The needs of its members have changed (and will continue to change), but PNAMDC is always listening, ready to pivot when needed. After all, it’s all about being resilient.

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Blog Champion Spotlight 02/15/2022 2:01pm CST



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