A key goal remains to expand STTI across Europe. We continue to host regional conferences every two years, the last being in Utrecht in the Netherlands in 2016 and the next in Cambridge, UK in 2018. We recognise that not all European nurses are able to access STTI events due to cost so the region developed the European Development Fund, funded through profits made from the regional conferences and are financially supporting undergraduate student nurses and registered nurses from low and middle income European countries to attend STTI events in Europe. We also recognise that PhD students are experiencing financial and other challenges in accessing conferences but need to develop collaborations to enhance their research careers. To address this issue the Region has hosted two virtual PhD scholarly events enabling PhD students to provide short presentations on their PhD studies which are then uploaded to our Regional website for wider dissemination. The audience has included MSc students from Rwanda so through using technology we are able to influence education and practice outside of Europe.
In Europe as in many parts of the world we face challenges in meeting the needs of migrants and refugees. Whilst individual chapters in the region have sought to address this issue in practical and philanthropic terms we also recognised the need to conduct research to explore migrants’ experiences of health care. This collaborative research project will be discussed in a separate presentation but the Region through conducting research is seeking to influence policy makers. Through working collaboratively and sharing resources the scope of influence is widened. We have therefore established a task and finish group exploring the feasibility of providing mentoring across Europe and the work of this group will be presented.
Several European members were privileged to participate in the GAPFON meeting held in Amsterdam last year. Our active participation enabled us to inform the priorities in terms of health needs and strategies for the Region. We have sought to actively engage in the discussions regarding the STTI Regional office. Our expectations for this office to meet the needs of European nurses, whilst ensuring the mission of STTI is retained, will be presented. For whilst STTI continues to expand in Europe, and there is wide scope for further expansion, challenges remain. There is more to do to raise awareness and widen the membership of STTI across Europe for STTI to become the global organisation of choice for nursing it aspires to be. As a Region and through this presentation we seek to demonstrate how through our actions and activities we have sought to influence at local, regional and international levels. Join us to hear what your European colleagues have achieved and what challenges we still face.