Introductory letter by Sr. Bernadette Shipanga
(Nursing Services Manager)
Reflecting back to my days when I attended crèche (my teacher was a nun), I was asked : “what are you going to be when you grow up?”.
My answer was that I was going to be a Matron.
I started at Roman Catholic Hospital on 08.01.1990, coming from Gobabis State Hospital. I was very impressed by the neatness and the manner in which the hospital was organized.
On March 21, 1990, the day of Namibia’s independence, the patients and hospital staff shared the joy of everyone in the city and in the whole country.
The same year, Sr. Marita was appointed was appointed as Matron heading up the nursing services. I was appointed as unit manager for ward 1 in the mid 1990’s, and in the early months of 2000, as chief unit manager for ward 1 and 2 for a period of 6 months. These were great (but hard) times in my life, as Sr. Marita, was my mentor and I learned new things every day.
Many changes took place during my time at Roman Catholic hospital. In fact there were so many changes, that it is difficult to single out all the events.
1991/92 upgrades were done to the whole interior of RCH, with air conditioning, nurse call intercom, oxygen supply, telephone call system and vacuum installed in the wards. These changes brought about that we no longer had to move oxygen bottles by hand. This in itself lightened our work load.
1996 also saw the building of a new floor above the pharmacy for the purpose of administration personnel. With all the dust and rubble, it was surprising that we could still get through our work, as we kept on cleaning where the builders had messed.
A large burden was placed upon the hospital with the cleaning of the wards, as well as the continual changing of bed linen; it was then outsourced to a private company in March 2001.
Sister Marita was appointed to the position of Mother Superior in 2003, and along with this great event, I received appointment to the position of Nursing Services Manger. In the old days, it would have been known as “Matron”.
Who says a child’s dreams cannot be fulfilled?
Good memories of our beloved hospital, is the assistance we got from the OSB Sisters as they helped us in various ways, even to the extent outside our working environment.
In all good things, I would firstly wish to thank my creator for what he has given me personally,
And secondly, thank my mentors and the staff for their whole hearted support and assistance when I first entered the service of Roman Catholic Hospital.
I see the future being bright, as God’s hand has been upon us in whatever we have done, and I firmly believe that His hand will be upon us in the future as well.
Sr. Bernadette Shipanga.