Centre for Rural Health Project Manager receives Excellence Award
UKZN’s Centre for Rural Health Project Manager, Mrs Dolly Nyasulu, received a Service Excellence Award from KwaZulu-Natal Health MEC, Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo, in recognition of her commitment to service delivery in the field of nursing, focusing on maternal health.
The Senior Midwife, who has worked for the Department of Health (DoH) for many years, said she was humbled by the accolade: ‘I feel very honoured and realise I have to work even harder to live up to expectations brought about by this award.’
Nyasulu said the award came as a surprise. ‘Job satisfaction is very important, that on its own is a huge reward.’
She is currently a project Manager for the KwaZulu-Natal Initiative for New-born Care (KINC) Project, a CRH programme that aims to improve the care of new-born babies in KZN district hospitals by training doctors, professional nurses and enrolled nurses to improve their skills and knowledge in new-born care.
She trained as a basic midwife in a Norwegian mission hospital. ‘During those times there were no incubators, no ultrasound machines and no CTG machines. We were trained to use our five senses when examining a pregnant woman. It was an amazing experience to provide care to a pregnant mother until she delivers her baby,’ said Nyasulu.
This made her realise that midwifery was a noble profession and as a midwife one become a part of the family from the time the baby was born. ‘I also realised that in midwifery one does not deal with sick human beings and if I do my job well, I quickly get my reward of handing the baby to the mother,’ she added.
Nyasulu qualified as a nurse in 1969 and the following year did a one-year midwifery course. She has been in the field of nursing specialising in midwifery-related programmes since then.
She grew up a rural area. ‘I used to watch the village women getting together to assist a woman in labour. Although we did not know much about what the women were doing to help, it was interesting to see how they went about their tasks until it would be announced that the baby had been born,’ she recalled. ‘I guess this is what influenced my decision to specialise when I studied nursing.’
She said the support she received from her family, especially her husband and daughters, was awesome. ‘I have also been very lucky wherever I work I enjoy a lot of support from my colleagues. I have also been fortunate to have wonderful supervisors who encourage me to strive against all odds.
‘Peer support and job satisfaction are the key to my successes. Making a difference, however small in people’s lives, is rewarding,’ she said.