A group of nurses recruited from around the world to care for patients in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland have celebrated after passing their final hurdle.

The 30 men and women received “graduation” certificates from Leicestershire Lord Lieutenant at a special ceremony at County Hall.

All 30 are now working in hospitals and inpatient units for Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust.

To get this far, each has had to:

  • Train and qualify as a nurse in their own country;
  • Pass an English language test;
  • Get through a job interview for LPT;
  • Undertake further training in the UK; and
  • Pass a practical competence assessment, which admits them to the Nursing and Midwifery Council register and therefore allows them to work in this country as a nurse.

The 30 arrived in November 2021. Another 48 are set to follow in their footsteps this calendar year, as part of LPT’s wider plan to address the local and national shortage of registered nurses.

LPT chief executive Angela Hillery said: “We are very proud of this initiative, and of all the nurses. They have achieved a lot, and we wanted to thank them for it.

“International recruitment is an important part of our strategy to get a pipeline of people through to support our workforce.

“We look forward to more coming, and we’re also exploring other professional groups as well. A massive thank you to everyone involved, I know it has been a great team effort to support them all.”

One of the initial 30 is Sinini Hlongwane from Zimbabwe. She said: “I’ve been practising as a nurse for the past 18 years, so now I’m so pleased that I’m a UK registered nurse. I’ve come here to pursue my career and I’m so glad that I’m part of the LPT team – they have been very supportive.”

Philip from The Philippines said coming to Leicester had given him his first opportunity to experience snow!

He added: “I’ve met a lot of very nice people and I was able to use my experiences from the Philippines and Singapore and I was able to have a very, very nice life here so far.”

You can see video highlights of the graduation ceremony here: https://youtu.be/iKqwnev2LqE .

To learn more about joining LPT, go to: https://www.leicspart.nhs.uk/jobs/ .