Highlands of Hope

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McGill Reporter
August 24, 2006 - Volume 39 Number 01
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Highlands of Hope

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Tanzanian nurse Betty Liduke
Claudio Calligaris

To be a nurse you have to be committed. You have to love your work. You have to be creative — especially if you're single-handedly fighting the spread of HIV/AIDS in your community. That was the message from the School of Nursing's first International Clinical Instructor in Africa, Betty Liduke, at a lecture August 22 at Wilson Hall. She was in Montreal after attending the XVI International AIDS Conference in Toronto.

The only-of-its-kind appointment recognizes Betty Liduke's work running a safe-sex World Health Organization program in 19 villages in the Highlands, a part of her native Tanzania that has been particularly hard-hit by the pandemic. It also highlights her role in helping establish a McGill-Highlands link by, among other things, working with the first McGill Nurses for Highlands Hope Fellow, Christina Clausen.

Clausen arrives in Tanzania Sept. 5 as the latest McGill medical volunteer on the project and the first of what is hoped to be a long line of students simultaneously receiving international nursing training and implementing the McGill Model of Nursing in African hospitals. "Nurses need to be creative, otherwise things will never move, never change," Liduke said. "Betty once said she'd started a revolution but no one knew," said Royal Orr, the Montreal journalist who upon returning from filming a documentary in Tanzania, and witnessing HIV/AIDS' ravages, approached the School of Nursing for help. He told the audience, "I'm a foot soldier in the Betty Liduke revolution."

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