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Royal Family come together to celebrate nurses and midwives on International Nurses Day

by Katie Balfe

Members of the Royal Family – including The Queen – joined together today to pay tribute to all healthcare nurses around the world on the occasion of International Nurses’ Day. You can see the video at the end of this article.

International Nurses Day takes place on Florence Nightingale’s birthday each year (12th May) in a bid to highlight the vital work done by health staff each and every day. 2020 marks the 200th anniversary of Nightingale’s birth in 1820, and big celebrations were planned to take place, but have been cancelled due to the Coronavirus.

Instead, the public has been asked to mark the occasion by shining a light from their windows at 8:30pm.

Prince Charles and The Queen lead a video of thanks to nurses on International Nurses Day, with Camilla, Prince William and Kate, Princess Anne and Princess Alexandra

In videos released by the Palace, The Queen, Prince of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall, Princess Royal, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Countess of Wessex were seen praising healthcare workers, as well as speaking to many from different locations around the world about the impact of COVID-19.

The majority of the video was filmed yesterday, when Sophie and Catherine teamed up to speak with nurses from seven Commonwealth countries including Malawi, the Bahamas, India, Australia and the UK, as well as British workers in Cyprus. The Royals spoke to the nurses about what they were facing in their respective countries and how they are all coping.

The Duchess of Cambridge and Countess of Wessex speak to nurses in India

The Duchess of Cambridge and Countess of Wessex speak to nurses in India

A team in Cyprus get a call from Kate and Sophie

A team in Cyprus get a call from Kate and Sophie

There was time for some humour during the calls though, when Sophie warned one nurse – who told them his wife was a teacher – that Catherine may recruit her to help homeschool the Cambridge children!

The women’s Zoom calls were facilitated by Nursing Now, of which The Duchess of Cambridge is Patron. The Duchess also sent a letter to her patronage to mark the day.

During the weekend, Princess Anne spoke with the Programme Manager of a medical ship in Tanzania. The ship provides facilities for those with little or no access to medical care and is supported by the Vine Trust, of which the Princess is Patron.

Prince Charles praises ‘unseen’ dedication of nurses with Sophie at Buckingham Palace

This isn’t the first time Royals have teamed up to honour nurses; back in 2018, Prince Charles and Sophie hosted healthcare workers at Buckingham Palace.

Meanwhile, last week, Prince William spoke with nurses at the Royal Marsden hospital, saying “Thank God for the Royal Marsden, I can tell you that… I hope you know how appreciated everyone is.”

The Duke of Cambridge is President of the hospital, which treats cancer patients.

The Duke of Cambridge speaks to the Royal Marsden team

The Duke of Cambridge speaks to the Royal Marsden team for International Nurses Day

From Scotland, both Prince Charles and Camilla recorded messages of support from their home in Birkhall. The Prince told everyone: “My family and I want to join in the chorus of thank-yous to nurses and midwifery staff in this country and all over the country and all over the world.”

While Camilla said that: “Extraordinary times call for extraordinary people.” Before she thanked them all “from the bottom of my heart”.

Camilla also sent a separate video message to one of her patronages, the Roald Dahl Charity. In it, she thanked all the nurses for all they were doing during the pandemic and for the seriously ill children in their care. The Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity funds over 75 ‘Roald Dahl Nurses’ across the UK to held seriously ill children ‘lead a marvellous life.”

You might recognise this charity; each year, The Duchess of Cornwall invites children supported by the organisation to decorate the Clarence House Christmas tree.

The nearly-5 minute video started off with an audio clip of The Queen speaking to Professor McCourt, who is President of the Commonwealth Nurses and Midwives Federation and Fellow of the Royal College of Nursing , about the ‘rather important day’. Her Majesty is their Patron.

The Monarch commented: “Obviously nurses have had a very important part to play recently.”

The Prince of Wales finished the video by expressing his gratitude: “Thank you all so much for the diligence and courage that you have shown.”

Not featured in the video was Princess Alexandra, who spoke with the head of the Naval Nursing Service over the phone. Alexandra is Patron of Queen Alexandra’s Royal Naval Nursing Service.

International Nurses’ Day comes as it was revealed that at 150 NHS healthcare workers have lost their lives in the fight against the Coronavirus.

Everyone at The Crown Chronicles would like to thank all healthcare workers from all around the world for the tireless work they are doing, both during this pandemic and everyday. Remember to put a light from your window at 8:30pm!

Watch the video below:

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