Come and join us for the Registered Nurses Foundation of BC 41st Annual General Meeting, June 22, 2021, 5 pm – 7 pm Via Zoom
by loving friends and family of Mary Bellis
Margaret Mary Bellis’s love of children is rumoured to have begun as the second child of six. Mary’s genuineness, curiosity, friendliness, compassion and loyalty to her family, friends and colleagues are legendary and reminiscent of the attributes of one who was raised in a large family.
What a year this has been for all of us! As with almost all non-profit societies it has certainly been challenging for us to carry out our mandate this past year. That said, we are proud to report that we still managed to provide 182 bursaries to BC’s nurses to assist with their basic and advanced education in 2020. We have also been exploring some new opportunities for RNFBC going forward and are excited to share them with all of our members, donors, and friends.
“I immediately fell in love with nursing when I started the program. I am extremely passionate about improving rural health care.”
Caitlyn is in her fourth year of nursing following a degree in biochemistry. She received a 2020 bursary that was matched in partnership with the BC Association of Healthcare Auxiliaries-NE Area and the Registered Nurses Foundation of BC.
The Registered Nurses Foundation of BC pays special tribute to Helen Louise Shore and is grateful for the support we have received in honour of her memory.
Helen made many meaningful connections and contributions during her distinguished life in nursing. She worked in Community Health Nursing and then dedicated her career to Nursing Education.
Helen L. Shore also completed a book at age 95 entitled “Shore to Shore: A record of the Shore family of Sheffield, England, to London, Ontario” describing some of her family stories dating back to the 15th Century – including one very famous family member, Florence Nightingale.
Helen earned many honours for her numerous contributions and achievements. She was also an active community volunteer supporting nursing and community service organizations. Helen touched many nurses and countless others through her lifetime. She is missed by many who share deep admiration for Helen’s contributions.
As St. Joseph’s School of Nursing Celebrates 100 years, please meet Linda Bitterman, Alumnae Executive – Her Nursing Journey and Legacy..
Last winter our St. Joseph’s Alumnae executive were excited, busily planning our 100th year anniversary in 2020 when COVID-19 hit. This got me thinking back to my early nursing days and realized how much a bursary can help a student nurse and how very important the established bursaries like St. Joseph’s are. In talking with RNFBC on how to promote our bursary, we thought what better way than celebrating St. Joseph’s SON 100th anniversary with a story about my personal nursing journey and legacy.
Many students know that nursing is going to be their chosen career, but that wasn’t me! As a teen, I was obsessed with my sports, ie. basketball and skating in the winter, and softball all summer! So, my dream was to be a P. E. Teacher. That all changed in a moment’s time at age 16 when I was a passenger in a head-on 3 car collision. There were 15 young people involved, with one dead and all but one injured, and most with fractures. This was in the days before seat belts so I was sent flying through the front windshield. The boy I was with, who was our driver, pulled me out of the car then laid down and died. He had severed his aorta. I had multiple injuries, internal bleeding, head injury, and over 130 sutures to my face and neck (apparently the nurses counted them. I wouldn’t know as I was still unconscious!). I’m telling you all this because, as a result of my time in the hospital, and all I saw and heard changed the course of my life! I got to really like most of my nurses, but there was one that was very impatient with me. I remember her forcing red Jello on me, and telling me if I didn’t eat it I’d have to have the IV back in! It took a lot of years before I could eat red Jello on my own! I also remember the staff talking about me but I couldn’t open my eyes or say anything! This was something I was very aware of when I was nursing and always remember the sensitivity of the patient’s feelings. Because of my injuries I was out of high school for 2 years before I was accepted at St. Joseph’s here in Victoria. I would always get the same thing told to me – “your marks are good, but we can’t take a chance on you, health-wise.” Thank God for the wonderful nuns who were willing to give me a chance! So I graduated in 1964, but did have to make up about 5 months because of having pneumonia in my last year, but I did make it!
My 1964 Graduating Class
>55 years later….that’s me in the centre in a striped sweater!