The Challenge of Language in Nursing More than Mere Words! Nurses International Let us list: • The nations represented in this room or with those with whom you work or associate. • The nations Nurses you know have visited • The languages spoken by Nurses in NZ and in the Nation of your heritage. Our World • Six continents defined by the UN • Cyprus is included in Europe • There are at least 237 States and territories • Languages – 13,511 and 30,000 dialects identified in the World Christian Encyclopedia • Largest Languages (Mother tongue): Chinese 1,000m; English 350 m; Spanish 336m; Hindi-Urdu 263m; Arabic 248m; Bengali 217m; Portuguese 184m; Japanese 128; German 106m • Official Languages: populations in countries with English 1,895; Chinese 1,290m; Spanish 373m; French 289m; Arabic 242m; Portuguese 215m; Russian 107m; Turkic 130m; German 110m; (Not all these countries speak the official language). In the Nursing World • Quality patient care is significantly threatened by the Language Barrier within every nation of the world. • The greatest resource Nurses have to overcome the language barrier to ensure truly effective good patient care at all times is found in ‘GOD’s LOVE’ constraining our every action and flowing through us to them and to all other health workers – professional and non-professional. DO WE TALK ABOUT THIS? The Source • “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 • We have the freedom to ask and receive: • “And in all things, whatever you ask in prayer believing… • “You have not because you ask amiss… • “Whatever you ask in My name that I will do” The Source made Available to every Nurse in every Nation. • Jesus said • “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” John 16:33. • “I will never leave you nor forsake you”. • So we may boldly say the LORD is my helper, I will not fear. What can man do to me? Hebrews13:5-6 Word Power • Words either heal or hurt, denigrate or educate, drag down or edify and build up • Identify helpful ways for Nurses to help Nurses communicate with all people groups. The Language of Love Crosses barriers and bridges potential chasms • Let us take a short time in silent reflection • Pray for the Nurses of the nations and for Nurses within each nation. • Turn to Song No 11 in our Song Book and sing ‘What a Friend We have in Jesus, All our sins and grief ’s to bear…’ LANGUAGE A MORAL RESPONSIBILITY • Nurses have a responsibility to communicate with all peoples irrespective of the barriers that exist. • Sign language and genuine caring that is enfolded in love demonstrates and allows God’s wisdom and intervening power to guide and encourage. • But development of language facility cannot and must not be ignored or neglected. • Some Nurses have a natural love of language but most of us find it hard up hill work. Don’t give up. Language made Easier Nurses can overcome and fulfill their moral obligation through his/her personal relationship with God and by being specific in prayer for: • Genuine conviction and commitment to use appropriate language for all peoples. • A listening ear and receptive mind to hear what is said. • An alert mind and heart to facilitate comprehension and His Spirit of understanding. Language Barriers Overcome • God alone can give us a spirit of humility and grace to ask the colleague who is socially different and tragically too often unacceptable to oneself, yet competent in the language that you need to fulfill your moral obligation to provide effective good Nursing Services. • The blessings that come through gracious acceptance of another’s natural gift of language cannot be appreciated until they have been experienced. PRIDE eats into both SUPERIOR and INFERIOR alike. Let PRIDE not be your or my self-made barrier and therefore downfall, in providing the very best. Let our Masterpiece of Nursing for every person in every situation bring us the pride and joy hither-tounknown.