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by Gemma Handy

‘Standing strong’ were the simple words on one placard held by nurses who turned out yesterday in a show of solidarity with their counterparts across the globe.

The world may be facing one of its biggest health crises to date but there was no mistaking the fortitude among the nation’s health care workers who have risked their lives to save their compatriots’.

Dozens of nurses brandishing banners formed a human chain along Queen Elizabeth Highway to mark International Nurses Day, an annual celebration which has perhaps never before been so significant.

Some nurses were visibly emotional as an official motorcade and passersby tooted horns and called words of encouragement during the hour-long display.

“We are overwhelmed by the support that everyone has shown to us today. Sometimes a nurse’s work is not easy, especially during this pandemic, but this has brought out the extra strength we have inside of us,” Nurses Association President Soria Dupie-Winston told Observer.

“We give thanks to the general public for acknowledging who we are and the work we do as nurses.”

Another nurse taking part described the event as “heart-warming”.

And another said she could not express how much the public support meant to her and her colleagues.

“It’s very emotional. We are here for those nurses we have lost around the world – for them and their families,” she added.

International Nurses Day is observed globally on May 12 – the birthday of Florence Nightingale who is considered the founder of modern nursing – to commemorate the selfless contributions nurses make to society.

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