This Sunday promises to deliver an unforgettable evening for Filipino nurses, their families and friends as organisers put in the finishing touches of the first-ever Filipino Australian Nursing (FAN) Awards and Gala Dinner.

Sydney-based non-profit community association, ADHIKA, Inc. and the Philippine Health Care Association of Australia Inc./Philippine Nurses Association Australia (PHCAA/PNAA) have announced the 12 finalists of the inaugural FAN awards, namely:

Veronica Alcantara

Myrna Bulanadi

Cynthia Duran

Roel Hernandez

Sergio Jumonong

Maria Cynthia Leigh

Milagros Lopez 

Prescilla Luzon

Marites Manese 

Felicitaz Perez

Edna Thompson

Nelly Tiga

All of the finalists, bar one, have devoted more than 30 years of service in the healthcare sector. 

Ella Magallanes Martirez, past president and current director of the Philippine Nurses Association Australia, said PHCAA/PNAA have been looking for a way to recognise the achievements of Filipino nurses in Australia.

"In many ways, Filipino nurses are among the unsung heroes of our birth country, the Philippines, and adopted country, Australia."

"Not only are they a source of pride for their families back in the Philippines but in Australia, they continue to raise the standards in their line of work, whether they are in hospitals, medical centres, clinics, nursing homes and other health institutions."

NSW Health Minister Jillian Skinner is confirmed as special guest alongside other Government officials, the Philippine Consulate of NSW and community leaders. 

“The attendance of the NSW Health Minister, the Hon Jillian Skinner, indicates the importance that she and the Health Ministry are attributing to the nurses’ valuable and dedicated services to the community," said Josie (Pines) Musa, overall coordinator of Adhika Inc. 

According to Government statistics, there are about 12,000 nurses of Filipino heritage in Australia. In 2008-09, around 1,500 permanent nurses arrived each year while 3,850 nurses arrived on a temporary sponsored basis.

The Black Tie awards ceremony will be held on 23 March 2014 at the Rooty Hill RSL Tivoli Room (55 Sherbrooke St, Rooty Hill). Tickets cost $70 and include a three-course meal and entertainment. Tickets still available. Contact 0404631438 (Josie) or 0404871319 (Ella).  

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