April's Nurse of the Month: Leonora de Lino (she/her), Director of Care, Fred Douglas Society, Inc.

Originally from Bulacan, Philippines, Leonora’s early years in nursing was focused on pediatric and oncology.


She also worked as an educator and infection control in Asian hospital and medical center in the Philippines, where she also completed her master’s in nursing and clinical management from St. Paul University Manila.


“I was part of the group impacted by retrogression. I had been waiting for so long for US embassy to call me, when my husband says, ‘Let's try Canada’,” Leonora explains. “The application was smoother and quicker and after a year, we’re here.”


After going through the process herself, Leonora is in a place where she can offer support and guidance to other internationally educated nurses.


“Because I've seen the process, I have suggestions and recommendations that I can share,” Leonora explains. “It’s different here in Canada than back home so just understanding the landscape of it is helpful. I give them lots of encouragement and advice.”


While she mentor others in their career, she fondly remembers the people who have helped her along her nursing career and journey as well.


“I have lots of mentors! It's not just the physicians and the nurses, it’s also the patients, housekeeping, health-care aides, and families.”


“They have the saying wherein ‘it takes a village to raise a child’ and for me, as a nurse, I was embraced by a big village,” Leonora says. “There are numerous people that helped me throughout my career.   I gain knowledge is seeing variety of perspective interacting with families, the residents, and the patients.”


With a successful career in the Philippines and in Canada, one of the things that stands out most to her is the impact nurses have on others.


“I feel that it is a walk of faith. Even if you're not intentionally wanting to do good work, you are,” shares Leonora. “You're doing it even if you're not aware of it. That is something that is of value to me.”


And while it's easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the work, she encourages other nurses to prioritize their own growth and well-being.


“I would tell the nurses that they should continue learning. Continue to be curious. Don't be afraid to ask questions. Encourage one another.” shares Leonora. “Try to stay positive and when they are on their day off or they are not working I would say have a good sleep! That is well deserved! Give it back to themselves and have a good quiet sleep.”