Welcome to my first blog. After travelling and working extensively overseas, it is time for me to explore our digital world. In this blog post, I want to share about working cross-culturally.
More than 30 years ago, I started my journey living and serving on Mornington Island in the Gulf of Carpentaria, off the coast of Australia. I thought I was going to teach health to aboriginal families, but how wonderful it was to learn instead from these Aboriginal brothers and sisters. They taught me about bush tucker and bush medicines and took me along on turtle and dugong hunts.
When I was just 21yrs of age and just finished both my general nursing and midwifery I was ready to conquer the world. I applied for a job in Tanna Island in New Hebrides because it sounded so exciting. The job description stated one had to travel in small canoes to the different neighbouring islands to deliver health care, whilst living in a hut. I thought, “ Now this is the job for me.” Sadly they wrote back and said I was too young. What a blow!
However after travelling for 16 months as a back packer over Africa, Europe and America, along with some small jobs along the way, I decided to reapply for another interesting position. This time with the Queensland Aboriginal Health Program.
In my youthful naivety, a child of the 70’s, I turned up in a near see through dress, with bracelets and rings collected from my travels, sharing confidently about my overseas experiences. The Doctor probably thought I might just be the sort who could handle living in remote areas. Even though I loved adventure I also had a deep compassion for people who have not had it easy in life. The statistics showed that sadly Aborigines died twenty years younger than the caucasian population of Australia. Loving health education more than clinical nursing the preventative health care job sounded fantastic, so much so I stayed with that position for 6 full years.
I hope you might like to contact and share your thoughts as well. You can also look at my web page. www.vivienwilson.com