Be the change you want to see in the world. ~ Ghandi

Saturday, August 27, 2011


ONE NURSE AT A TIME is proud to announce our twelfth scholarship for 2011. Sylvia Estrada will travel to San Juan del Rio Coco, Nicaragua in late September to work with Grounds for Health.  In Ms Estrada's own words:
"It was through an article in Nurse Week that I found out about ONAAT.  In the words of St. Francis Assissi, “It is in giving that we receive” and certainly every time I go into a Central American country to provide health care services to the underserved women of that country, I am reminded of how truly fortunate and blessed we are living in this country.  Volunteering in underserved areas is my “Chicken Soup For  The Soul” and I look forward to my annual trips to educate and help heal vulnerable women."
We welcome Sylvia to the sisterhood/Brotherhood of nurses who are changing the world ....One Nurse At A Time !

Sylvia S. Estrada, RNC, WHCNP, CBCN, MSN, MSHCM, BSN is the Clinical Program Coordinator for the Wasserman Breast Cancer Risk Reduction Program at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Ms. Estrada is nationally certified as a:  Women's Health Care Nurse Practitioner; Certified Breast Care Nurse; and Certified Clinical Research Professional.     Her current clinical care and research interests involve the screening of women, who are at high risk for breast cancer, provide genetic counseling for hereditary breast and ovarian cancer. Ms. Estrada received her nursing degree from Los Angeles County /University of Southern California (LAC/USC) School of Nursing and her Bachelor's in Nursing from California State University, Los Angeles. She earned a Master's degree in Healthcare Management from California State University, Los Angeles and a Master's degree in Nursing from California State University, Long Beach. She is currently enrolled in the Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) program at Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, California.  Ms. Estrada demonstrates a strong commitment to her volunteer work providing service and medical care to the underserved populations across Central American countries, travelling abroad annually to address, deliver and manage gynecological and obstetric health care needs of impoverished women.  

Friday, August 19, 2011

ONAAT Awards Our Eleventh Scholarship for 2011

 One Nurse At A Time congratulates Heather Saunders, RN on on her dedication to humanitarian nursing. Heather will be serving in September with ER Abroad in Nakuru, Kenya and is the eleventh ONAAT scholarship recipient this year. In Heather's own words:

"I am currently a registered nurse at a level 1 trauma center in Springfield, IL. Although I love my job as an emergency room nurse, my truest calling and passion is for working with populations of people in health crisis and in need of humanitarian assistance.  I graduated from an ADN program in May of 2010 but have been participating in medical mission work since the summer of 2006 when I accompanied a team of medical staff to Ghana, West Africa.  I am currently finishing my bachelor’s degree in nursing and hope to continue on to John Hopkins University where I aspire to obtain a master’s degree in public health.  It is my dream to be able to work full time in medical missions.  Until then I will continue to bring love and medicine to the world through short-term trips."

                        "The purpose of life is a life of purpose." ~ Robert Byrne

Sunday, August 14, 2011

On A Sunny Saturday in Seattle

  A small crowd of One Nurse At A Time supportors gathered at Tulas Jazz Club in Seattle on Saturday afternoon to hear  jazz musician, Rick DellaRatta, play.  The concert was a ONAAT fund-raiser and proceeds from the ticket sales will go toward nursing scholarships for nurses who volunteer abroad.

"Rick DellaRatta is now considered by many to be one of the finest Singer/Pianists performing today and one of only a handful of Jazz Artists who can make a successful musical presentation to a large audience without having to abandon the true art form of Jazz. Through his life long endeavor to help  advance people to their highest potential through the understanding of Jazz as well as spreading peace worldwide through his "Jazz for Peace World Tour." (quote from

ONAAT president, Sue Averill introduced DellaRatta and spoke briefly about  the history of One Nurse and the goals we have not simply met, but have exceeded.  To date, in 2012 alone, we have awarded 12 One-Thousand dollar scholarships to nurses who provided humanitarian health care  in Guatemala, Ecuador, Viet Nam, Haiti, Honduras, Niger and Kenya!

We would like to thank all who turned out for the concert (on one of the very few sunny Saturday's Seattle has seen this season!) in support of our nurses. We also want to thank all who donate to One Nurse all year round and remind everyone that it is easy to make a donation from our website It is only through the generous support of our donors that we are able to bring change to nurse at a  time. Thank you!

Monday, August 8, 2011

WELCOME Karis Cady

   One Nurse At  A Time is proud to announce a new member to our Board.  Karis Cady, of Shoreline, Washington joins us and we all look forward to working together as we continue to expand our efforts to support volunteer humanitarian work at home and abroad. 

Karis speaks of the roots of her passion for humanitarian work:  "Since the age of three I knew I wanted to be an artist. I also wanted to live out the values my parents instilled in me of serving others and making an impact in the world. For the past twelve years I’ve worked as the Senior Designer at Pyramid Communications, a communications firm that works with non-profits, foundations, indigenous groups and community organizations. Our tagline is ‘We give voice to good causes.’
My parents had a passion for social justice and community development, so they started a non-profit housing firm in Cincinnati’s poorest community. Believing that change comes from within, they chose to live and raise their family in that same community. I grew up playing on fire escapes, waiting in food stamp lines, giving volunteer church groups tours of the ghetto, and playing barefoot in the streets. I worked in the soup kitchen but I was also the kid in the soup kitchen line.
My mother was a hospital chaplain. She believed that everyone had a story to tell and it was her goal to hear as many of those stories as she could. She had an amazing gift of comfort in the midst of pain and fear. She died of cancer when I was 21.
Through my experience hanging out at Mom’s workplace as well as going through her illness, I believe in the power of nurses. I was inspired to work with ONAAT because I want to support nurses that choose to volunteer their time and skills in areas that so desperately need it. We all can change the world, and ourselves, by using the gifts we are given and sharing them with others."
We  welcome Karis to the team and look forward to working together. WE re thrilled to add her voice to the good we are doing in the world.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Return to Haiti

I returned to Haiti with MMRC Haiti. MMRC is dedicated to the helping Haitian orphanages, running logistics for medical personnel  and getting donated supplies to people who need them most.
We spent our days at an orphanage in Titanyen, Haiti. The kids there just simply melt your heart! The live with meager shelter (girls have a tent to sleep in and the boys sleep outside), limited food and water, and very little medical care. They have few toys and not enough clothes and shoes to go around. The nurses in our group conducted health assessments for the kids. We treated multiple cases of tinea capitis (a common fungal infection of the scalp) as well as some other common childhood ailments. We created an online record for each child to help coordinate care and share information between medical teams that visit the orphanage.  The non-medical part of our team spent the days building showers for the kids who currently have no running water.

We spent some of our nights working in the ER and triage at a local NGO run hospital because they were short staffed and only had 3 volunteer nurses that week. In the ER we treated everything from lacerations to fractures to hypoglycemic emergencies.
 MMRC Haiti also conducted medical transfers of patients. Weather it was a child with cholera, an adult with severe sepsis, a pregnant woman or a baby, we would place them in our vehicle and take them to the place where they would get the most appropriate care. Real ambulances are a rare commodity in Port Au Prince so we treat and transfer patients in the back of an old pick up truck.

My favorite part of working in Haiti is working along side the Haitian people. At MMRC Haiti we have a great group of Haitian guys that are our coworkers, security, translators and friends. One of our Haitian coworkers came to us and told us that MSPP (the Haitian Ministry of Health) was pulling bodies from his neighborhood daily. They were dying of cholera. He asked us to come teach a cholera class. We jumped at the chance and we held several cholera education classes in his neighborhood teaching both treatment and prevention measures. We were happy to see some of the class members passing on the info to more locals after class. 

I never like leaving Haiti. Haiti makes me a better person. It makes me a better steward of health care resources in the states and makes me grateful to have them.  Haiti makes me think outside the box to solve patient care problems.  Haiti makes me realize how many things I can live without and teaches me the true meaning of human perseverance and resilience. I hope to return soon.

~Laura Brown

Laura Brown, RN, BSN, CCRN grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina and graduated from Belmont University in 2002.  Laura works in Med/Surg ICU at the University of Washington Medical Center.  Laura has been on six medical missions to Haiti since the earthquake of 2010 and continues to be amazed at the spirit of the Haitian people. She lives in the Seattle area with her husband and their two dogs. Laura enjoys volunteering at a prison pet reading program, hiking and traveling.