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The Visionary Woman By Teenu Impactress

A visionary woman has a compelling vision for their life, they can see beyond the ambiguity and challenges of today to an empowering picture of tomorrow.

Interview with Mrs Yemi Osho 
How will you like to be introduced, your name, qualification, and where are you from?

Cllr Yemi Osho
RGN, RM, DIPHE, DN, BSc, MSc, PGDiP, QN. From London UK 

What is your current job tittle, role and how has this impacted life and especially the community in general?

I am Currently working within, Non-for-Profit, NHS/Social Care, Political, Corporate and Charity. I am the Founder/CEO of Diabetes Action, Elected Local Government Councillor, Executive Director Rotvic Consultancy LTD, Non-Executive Director Process C19, Clinical Director, Advanced Nurse Practioner, Board of Director and Trustees Capital Kids Cricket and Henry Green Trust Scholarship

My careers which now span over 30 years started as a Midwife in Nigeria. I qualified as a Midwife 1984, prior to coming to UK 1988 to further my studies. I briefly worked in a ballet show factory before I was enrolled to undertake my general nursing at Romford College of Nursing (Now Southbank University) in 1990. I subsequently had my BSC in Specialist Home Nurse Practitioner in 1997 and Master degree in 2012. Though I later had a second MSC post graduate qualification in Advanced Nursing Practice 

My Nursing career has been about service to humanity and I have also been an activist and a campaigner fighting for injustice, inequality, discrimination, women empowerment for over 30 years
And making a difference in people's lives is a unique pedigree and being an activist prompted me to become a politician in order to be a voice for those who are marginalised, oppressed and underprivileged in our society. My experience as a nurse has prepared me immensely for politics. 
I have been able to work my way up the ladder, having worked as a Board Nurse for 2 CCGs in London and Director of Nursing. I am also an Executive Director of my own companies providing consultancy to Primary, Secondary Care, Private and Voluntary sectors. I have extensive experience in strategic planning; operational management, development of integrated care pathways, service redesign and healthcare transformation.  

What are your accomplishments in your careers over the years? 

In 2012, I was Awarded ‘Queens Nurse’ title as a result of my exemplary leadership and commitment to delivering high quality patient care. In 2017, I was awarded Exepl...

The humanitarian aspect of nursing was a smooth transition of wanting to take part in politics and making a difference. Hence, in 2014 I stood as Labour Party Candidate and was elected as a councillor for Lea Bridge Ward. But the journey began in 2001 when I became active member of Labour Party. I have served in various capacities including: Vice Chair of LCF. BAME Officer Chingford GC, Vice Chair Walthamstow GC, LGC Member & LCF Secretary,  as well as Elected Board Member of RCN, Member of Chief Nursing BAME Advisory Committee : Delegate to  London Region Labour Party Conference, Delegate to Chingford Labour Party General Committee and London Cooperative Council

As a councillor, I have had the opportunity to serve and represent residents by working with them and being a voice to address issues that matter to them be it in relation to housing, welfare benefits, local NHS, Schools, Safety, planning or environmental issues. In May 2017, I was elected as Mayor and this has provided me further opportunity and platform to bring diverse cultures together. 

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What are your challenges in your career over the years especially has a female leader ? 

Despite the challenges over the years as a black nurse working in the NHS; in terms of discrimination, barrier to promotion, I often find there are moments when I wake up in the morning and have to remind myself that I have actually broken through glass ceiling against the backdrops of impossibility and barriers. 
From my perspective, the way in which we can negate this narrow view of migrants is through better participation and representation of people from Black, Asian and Ethnic minority in democracy.

We need to work together to create opportunity for BAME community to develop their giving talents. Lack of inclusion has a huge impact. It will only deny everyone access to their gifts, talents and contributions. We need to educate ourselves in the importance of active participation, more inclusive, capacity building, skills and strengthening our networks. 

A deeper and more democratic approach is needed but this can only be achieved if more people from BAME community come forward to stand as councillors, members of house of parliament, house of lords, school governors, Trustees of boards and other public and private sectors

I know some of you will argue there is no equal opportunity. Of course, I am not oblivious to the fact that so many doors of opportunities have been shut 
for a lot of people but the most valuable experience is the fact that we should never shy away from standing up or challenging the status quo or injustice. 

In conclusion, what is Your VISION for the future and ADVICE to other women and upcoming younger women?

From my own perspectives the overt and covert prejudices that I have experienced; whether on the grounds of race or gender have strengthened me. My own life experiences and challenges have shaped both personal and my professional life. Becoming the first citizen of the borough as someone from African origin shows that with determination and hard work, we can all achieve our dreams whatever the hurdles or obstacles.
I have always had the determination to succeed, right from an early age, no matter the circumstances or obstacles. Having a sense of purpose is a factor that has always spurred me on to achieving my set targets. I decided long ago that I will never allow anyone to stop me, even though many have tried in diverse ways to hinder me. There have been times when I had to either fiercely or subtly challenge those who obstruct me in order to have my way. And this is how I have been able to overcome the racism, the prejudice, stereotype and the discrimination that I have faced over the years. This is the kind of sense of purpose which I hope other young people would emulate as they journey through life.

My activism has always been geared towards having a voice in order to survive and make an impact, not just for myself but in the lives of other people. This, I can say, was what propelled me to become a midwife, a nurse and a politician. From an early age, I have had the zeal to fight injustice and to be a role model for the youth, particularly, the girl child so that I will be able to promote the need for their basic education. In the African culture, in most homes, girls' education is not given much consideration. Rather, they are given in marriage while still young and the moment they become mothers, that is the end if their social progress, living in abject poverty. This is the reason why most African countries are still in the state that they are, undeveloped. Sometimes in life, there is the need for one to be resilient and challenge some of these cultures, especially, deep-rooted ones about the lack of knowledge of the importance of education. Education enhances development as well as enabling one to compete in the current globalisation. Unfortunately, many African governments continue to overlook this important aspect of social development.
I am hoping that one day I will have the exposure to share the experiences that I have gained in the diaspora in Africa and on the global scene. Africa is a great continent and must be seen as such, rather than being looked upon as it has been for centuries. The natural resources with which mother earth has endowed Africa cannot be rivalled by any other continent, yet we are the poorest of all. This shouldn't continue. We can make Africa great and one of the ways in which we can attain that is through education and, the other is standing up against injustice faced by the common man daily, instead of glamourizing some of our political leaders who are actually our mis-leaders. They are the cause of Africa's doom. Nigeria, in particular, is considered a giant and I am hoping that in the not-too-distant future we will be able to resurrect its image and fly its flag at full mast.

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