CARE Centre for Internationally Educated Nurses

The member Registered Nurse (RN) and the member Registered Practical Nurse (RPN) has faced a lot of challenges to become a licensed nurse in Ontario.

to make the Canadian healthcare workplace a better place are awarded as a result of their efforts. The CARE Centre for Internationally Educated Nurses (IENs) presents the annual awards ( the Joan Lesmond IEN of the year) to those member to recognize and appreciate the work done by these Nurses.

The Joan Lesmond IEN of the Year Awards Selection Committee Chair Dr. Elaine Santa Mina said that the nominees for the awards had an exceptional story to tell, stories which showed the number of struggles faced by those nominees and also how great their determination was and she added that all the(RN) and (RNP) was always in close competition and she considered them all as a winner.

CARE Centre for Internationally Educated Nurses

Sangeeta Mahrajan, an internationally educated nurse from Nepal who has received the RN IEN of the year entered Canada in 2015 bringing with her an experience of six years of acute care nursing and she helped the launch of the  “Home2Day” project as a nurse with the VHA home healthcare, this project was very suitable and helpful for patients with the Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease  (COPD) in the community. In 2020, Sangeeta received the client choice award of the year after her second year.

Bunyatova, a nominator of Sangeeta said that  she was honestly an outstanding nurse that can absolutely make the difference in people’s lives and she deserved the nickname of Angel  . Dan Uzelac, HR Manager, Talent Acquisition and Development at VHA  said that she is able to give hope to everyone especially for that most vulnerable one and many clients said happily that Sangeeta is the best.

Sangeeta Mahrajan said that she was so thankful and appreciative for receiving the CARE Centre’s Joan Lesmond IEN of Year Award and she added that the realization was the proudest moment in her nursing career and she would be always inspired by this achievement and to be a part of the Canadian healthcare system was an unbelievable honor for her. 

Rodolfo D. Lastimosa Jr was chosen  the RPN  of the year .He was working as a Registered Nurse in the Philippines, he was a Registered, Physical Therapist and Registered Midwife. Besides, he holds a master’s degree in Nursing and also works as a nurse educator. His journey started as an RPN in 2013 to graduate three years later from the University of Toronto’s Ontario Internationally Educated Physical Therapy Bridging Program. Four years after his graduation, Rodolfo completed  York University’s BScN RN Program for IENs and he was the former president he is now a member of the College of Nurses of Ontario’s RPN Council Member for the Central Toronto District, as well as the Nursing Students of Ontario interest group of the RNAO.

Mary Osei, Manager, Respirology/Acute General Medicine Program at Humber when giving a speech on Rodolfo she said that during his work at Humber River Hospital, he distinguished and presented himself as an extraordinary RNP, and he gave safe and compassionate care to his patients and their families and that why he is able to have great connections with them. Lastimosa was always passionate about his job and was always stepping ahead of what was expected from him. In 2016, he was the second  Joan Lesmond IEN of the Year Award-winner from Humber River Hospital: RN Kareen Tacderas.

Rodolfo D. Lastimosa Jr said that the path was not easy for him. However, he had no regret since that path lead him to be in his current position, and he also added that receiving such an award was very important evidence that we should not give up our dreams, no matter what the obstacles are, because Rome wasn’t built in a day and every single step had its role in your success story, and he dedicated his achievement to his family in the Philippines, especially his father who had just passed away.

On the occasion of the 20th Anniversary and Graduation Celebration of the CARE Centre for Internationally Educated Nurses (IENs), The Joan Lesmond IEN of the Year Awards presentation will be delivered over Zoom on September 16th.

Since 2001 the Government of Ontario has been the funder of CARE Centre. This Centre provides services in different parts of Ontario from Kingston to Windsor. Furthermore, it offers online services to other parts of the provinces. Currently, programs and services are virtual due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship  Canada have funded Our pan-Canadian Pre-Arrival Supports and Services Program (PASS)  since 2016.

CARE Centre is a good opportunity for those who want to be become successful nurses by providing IENs with one-on-one case management and also helps them to improve their language and communication skills, exam preparation, professional development, mentoring, and networking. CARE Centre is a registered charity (Charitable Number 84420 5948 RR0001).