Hospitable, caring, hardworking, and always smiling, these are character traits that are embedded in the Filipino culture and define why nursing is a perfect fit for many Filipinos, especially those working overseas. According to the Philippine News Agency, roughly 10 to 12 million Filipino nurses and caregivers are working in more than 50 countries abroad. The Philippines has the largest export of nurses all over the world, with many Filipinos committing their lives to care for others.
Many Filipino nurses move overseas to find higher pay, better benefits, and opportunities to increase their nursing skills. Though statistics may show that nurses often move to a new country, many still choose to return to the Philippines and to their respective communities. Delia, CURE Philippines’ Head Ward Nurse, made such a decision to move abroad and committed her life to serve overseas in order to provide for her children.
“I did not want to leave the Philippines, but what future can I give my children here? My plan was to stay for three years in the US, only so I could put my children through school. Then, I would go back home. Three years wasn’t enough, so I pushed through five years,” says Nurse Delia.
When Filipino nurses do decide to come back home, there are many local hospitals and opportunities available for them to make an impact in their community. For Delia, that opportunity came from CURE Philippines (Tebow CURE). While she was still working in the United States, a friend talked to her about CURE’s opening in Davao City, her hometown. She then prayed, “Lord, I know you will give me this job. I am going to that hospital.”
Through God’s leading, Delia was eager to join Tebow CURE’s nursing team and sent in her application. Soon enough, she got the call to be part of CURE’s ministry. Five years later, Delia is still serving at Tebow CURE. Trading her US dollar earnings for local pesos, her experiences taught her to be content because of the higher purpose of serving children in need, their families, and even her colleagues.
For Delia, the most rewarding part about being a nurse at Tebow CURE is “the quality of life.” After working at a place where she had no freedom to choose when to take a break or spend time with her family, it’s a breath of fresh air. Moreover, the growth in her career has not stopped since returning home, and she uses more of her nursing skills at CURE than elsewhere. She also finds it helpful that most of our patients are full of gratitude.
As Tebow CURE’s head nurse, Delia doesn’t only get inspired by the patients whom she serves, but also the entire nursing team’s enthusiasm to be part of our mission to heal the sick and proclaim the kingdom of God. We have nurses who are happy to spend time with patients and tell them about Jesus. Delia shares, “There is definitely a difference with how our nurses interact with our patients at Tebow CURE compared to other workplaces. That is because of the hospital culture.”
“We are always looking for nurses. But there are opportunities opening all over the place so it’s hard to find nurses with experience.” Delia believes that it is even better to hire new graduates and train them, even if our training equips them for moving overseas. While Tebow CURE is not exempt from nurse turnover, there is hope that they will excel out in the world and will come back and serve as Delia did. “I work at Tebow CURE because we take part in restoring the broken as we serve the poorest of the poor.”
Delia feels that God is constantly refining her to choose to live satisfied and content in her service to him. “My only hope,” she says, “is for patients to come in as they are and leave knowing that they are loved and cared for. I pray that I can be a representation of how Jesus loves and cares for us.”