PEC Nurse Wins Joan Lesmond IEN of the Year Award

CARE Centre for Internationally Educated Nurses (IENs) and Pioneer Elder Care congratulate the Joan Lesmond IEN of the Year Award RPN recipient for 2019, Belinda Lagria, Assistant Director of Care at Pioneer Elder Care in St. Catharines. The annual awards recognize member IENs who are nominated by their peers and employers for the contributions they bring to Ontario healthcare. The awards are name after the late Dr. Joan Lesmond, a nursing leader who championed diversity and inclusion.

“We are grateful to the Ontario healthcare employers who each year support the nominations of our member IENs, who face many challenges coming to Ontario with the goal of achieving nursing licensure,” said Janet Kwansah, RN, Chair of the award selection committee. “Once our member IENs become registered, they continue to establish their nursing careers in Canada. We have many partner employers who are ready to give them their first, and continuing, opportunities.”

Belinda Lagria completed a Bachelor of Science in Nursing at Virgen Milagrosa University in the Philippines and was a clinical instructor in two nursing programs at universities in the Philippines. After coming to Ontario, she completed the RPN Refresher Program at Humber College, and received certification in dementia nursing and palliative care. Lagria will receive her award at a presentation at Pioneer Elder Care, 29 St. Helena Street, St. Catharines, on Friday December 13th at 11:30am until 12:30pm.

“It is a great honor to be nominated and to receive the Joan Lesmond IEN of the Year Award,” said Lagria. “With this, I humbly extend my greatest thanks to the Lord Almighty for blessing me with guidance, perseverance and good health, which helps me to provide care and compassion to clients. I hope this award will inspire other IENs to continue to pursue the nursing profession despite the hurdles that may come along the way.”

“We are so proud of Belinda as she is being recognized with the Joan Lesmond IEN of the Year Award,” said Lynne Martin, R.N.C., President of Pioneer Elder Care Inc.  “Belinda’s nursing and leadership skills propelled her into the Assistant Director of Care position, while never losing sight of the importance of compassionate care for our residents with the challenges of dementia and Alzheimer’s. Because of her dedication and passion for nursing, her understanding and support for family members as well as the Pioneer team, she is well deserving of this prestigious honour and we could not be happier for Belinda and her family”.

Pioneer Elder Care offers residents personal and professional care for seniors living with dementia, Alzheimer’s and memory challenges. Pioneer Elder Care provides an inviting, home-like environment at four 10-resident homes in St. Catharines. An exceptional team of doctors, nurses and caregivers offer continuity of treatment and a high level of physical and emotional care. Pioneer Elder Care has the highest ratio of personal support workers per resident offered in Ontario, with services for assisted living, residential nursing and palliative care. Pioneer Elder Care’s residents and their families have confidence that in the four unique care homes, time is spent enjoying.

Over 4,000 nurses from more than 100 countries have accessed services and supports at CARE Centre for Internationally Educated Nurses (IENs) since 2001. CARE Centre is a not-for-profit professional organization funded by the Government of Ontario. CARE Centre provides IENs with the one-on-one case management, language and communication skills, exam preparation, professional development, mentoring and networking to be successful in the nursing profession. CARE Centre recognizes the value of nurses with diverse education and experience and is committed to advocating for their full contribution to Ontario’s health care system. CARE Centre is a registered charity (Charitable Number 84420 5948 RR0001).