What is your role and/or practice experience?
Arina Bogdan has been a Registered Nurse for just under 3 years and taught in the Personal Support Worker program with the Toronto District School Board. She is currently finishing up the Master of Public Health program at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto (UofT).
Shugri Nour has practiced as a Registered Nurse for 5 years, previously working in hemodialysis and complex continuing care. She completed her Master of Nursing – Clinical stream at UofT in 2021. Navisha Weerasinghe has been a Registered Nurse for the past 4 years and is currently working as a Professional Practice Clinician at Halton Healthcare and in the Emergency Department as a staff RN at Brampton Civic Hospital.
Navisha completed her Master of Nursing – Clinical program at UofT in 2021 and will be starting her PhD in Nursing Science at UofT under the supervision of Dr. Quinn Grundy, a fellow at the Centre for Sustainable Health Systems (CSHS) beginning in Fall 2022.
What is your experience in environmental sustainability and/or environmental justice? What are some environmental sustainability projects you have led, implemented, participated in or are currently working on in your role as a nurse?
Currently, Arina, Shugri and Navisha are Research Assistants under CASCADES, working to promote environmentally sustainable practice within healthcare systems. They are developing content and educational tools focused on virtual healthcare, environmental sustainability within labour and delivery settings, sustainable food in healthcare, green nephrology, climate positive care, and addressing ward waste in healthcare settings.
How did you get started in environmental sustainability and/or environmental justice work? What inspired you?
Arina has always been interested in promoting environmentally sustainable practices but considers herself relatively new to the field. Whilst searching for Research Assistant positions at UofT, she came across an opportunity at CASCADES. She looks forward to learning more about climate change and its relation to human health through her position at CASCADES.
For Shugri and Navisha, they were introduced to topics on environmental sustainability and the impacts of climate change in their graduate studies in Dr. Grundy’s class. Following graduation, Shugri and Navisha took interest in addressing health systems capacity to mitigate their carbon footprint through supporting sustainable practice. This led to their work in the CASCADES national project under CSHS, which leverages the voices of healthcare workers in Canada to transition toward a sustainable, net-zero health system.
How do you recommend others get involved in the type of sustainability work you are doing? Is there any advice or are there any resources you would recommend to other nurses interested in starting their own sustainable practice initiatives?
One of the best ways to get involved in sustainability work as a student is to explore the initiatives led by your school. For example, at UofT, you can check out the Climate Positive Energy Community which connects graduate students and postdoctoral fellows in environmentally sustainable energy research. You can also register to become a Nurse Climate Champion for the Nurses Climate Challenge, and join the movement to protect patients and communities from the health impacts of climate change.
Where can others contact you, if they are interested in learning more about your work?
Shugri can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.