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Judith will offer two mini-Leadership Workshops to leaders of National Nursing Associations in sub-Saharan Africa in 2011


In the middle of our cold winter 2011, I will be volunteering my time to offer two 2-day leadership development workshops to National Nursing Association leaders from 15 sub-Saharan African countries (Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe).   These nurse leaders are members of the Southern African Network of Nurses and Midwives (SANNAM), an organization that grew out of the 2000 International Conference on HIV/AIDS in South Africa, in response to concerns of nurses about the impact of the pandemic on nursing practice, and on nurses themselves.   For more information about SANNAM, you can check out the website (Please note that I have had this site blocked at times due to virus problem, so use with caution).

Since 2002, SANNAM has been a participant in the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) Strengthening Nurses, Nursing Networks and Associations Program (SNNNAP).  In this wonderful initiative, CNA partners with 8 national nursing associations and one network of regional nursing associations around the world, to strengthen nursing’s contribution to the advancement of global health and equity.  SNNNAP activities are made possible by financial support of the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).  You can read more at

From 2004 onward, I have had the privilege and pleasure of facilitating SNNNAP’s partnership workshops, an uplifting part of a study tour organized to coincide with each CNA Biennial.  The accomplishments of these developing organizations never fail to amaze and humble me, and the appreciation of Canada’s investment in their success always makes me very proud.

In addition, in 2007 Michael Villeneuve and I went to Pretoria, where we offered the CNA Influencing Policy workshop to SANNAM members and to a group of national and provincial leaders from DENOSA (the nursing association of South Africa).  It was a great experience!

So, as I found myself at a time in life where the children were off the payroll and I did not need to work quite so hard, I offered to share some time to the SNNNAP program.  Given the history and reputation of the DMW-NLI and HLI, CNA approached me to ask if I would offer leadership development workshops to SANNAM.   We’ve been working at the planning and development of these workshops since last spring.

The process started by me identifying topics which I would feel comfortable leading.  We then conducted a survey of SANNAM members to see which topics they felt would add most value – both to SANNAM, and to their work in their own countries. The survey – and the time available – narrowed the number of topics to three: Kouzes & Posner’s Five Practices, Building High Performance Teams, and Influencing Policy.

In December, I went to Pretoria to attend SANNAM’s annual networking meeting (so that I could gain a better understanding of the activities and challenges that they are facing – both in their individual countries and as a network).  I stayed on for a week, working with the organization’s Executive Director to actually plan and develop the workshop and materials.   These have now gone for translation (SANNAM conducts its business in three languages: English, French and Portuguese).   SANNAM and CNA are very busy working with the host countries (South Africa and Zambia) to arrange the logistics (flights, hotels, translation, budget, etc, etc…) for all of the attendees, and we are very much looking forward to the actual events – which will take place in February and March 2011.  I hope to be able to share some photos and comments with you after I return.