♥ I’m been through a lot of disappointments, depressions, heartache whatever you called it..

Dear Kim,
Thank you very much for your quick response. I really appreciate your interest in our story, I felt relief when I am writing you my story,just to know that someone out thre who really wants to help us and hear us is more than enough.
I always read your blog and get some lesson and idea ,thanks again.
I am from Philippines an RN,  and  was working also in Saudi Arabia for 16 years. I’m been through a lot of dessapointments, depressions, heartache whatever you called it. I and my family landed in Ontario,  as immigrant ,because my uncle was there we just visited him before coming here in Calagary. I am fully aware that as immigrant we have to upgrade our profession here in Canada,but not as we expected that it is hard for us to do so.Especially our english exam which they have a high passing mark ,like they want us to be perfect , which is for me is not in reality. I spoke to several Filipino nurses and this is also one of there problem to pass the english exam. I toke IELTS twice ,I passed the speaking but always low in  writing,I had CELBAN last 2010 but unfortunately my writing again is low. I know that my weakness is writing even before ,but I know also it is not a hindrance to be a nurse here in Canada. The medium of communication in Saudi Arabia is english and I dont have any problem there for 16 years,I’m just wondering why here in Canada we have difficulty reaching our dream to be a nurse. I am now at this time on the process of registering in CNO as Practical nurse, I will take the english exam as one of my requirement. I’ve been through a lot of processing my paper ,I try CARNA but because of english exam ,I decided not to continue, I try  studying in Bow Valley College ,again I quit because I am really stressed out from work to study, to family obligation and besides studying in Bow Valley is really stressful. I am really frustrated but I have to stand in the ground because of my husband and son and one more year I will be 5 years out of my profession as a nurse,thats why I really need to pass the CELBAN this time otherwise its an end. I think i have to redo (my CELBAN)all because that is the new policy of all the nursing body here in Canada ,if you fail one you have to redo all.
   Again Kim thank you very much and may GOD BLESS you more and more. G

Woman Working at ComputerDear G,
Thank you for your emails! It is always great to get emails from people who read the blog, Dear Kim.

I loved reading, “I really appreciate your interest in our story, I felt relief when I am writing you my story,just to know that someone out thre who really wants to help us and hear us is more than enough.” This is my mission, so I am glad you felt the support and interest! When it comes to the disappointment, and disillusionment, have you read the tag encouragement

Every once and a while I get an e-mail that I know, immediately, will be one posted on Dear Kim. Your e-mail is such an e-mail. Why? Because what you have written is a common experience. It is so common for people from the Philippines to struggle with their English score and not understand why the required scores are so high and so hard to obtain. Many, like you feel frustrated. And it is common, in this frustration, to give up.

I am fully aware that as immigrant we have to upgrade our profession here in Canada,but not as we expected that it is hard for us to do so.Especially our english exam which they have a high passing mark ,like they want us to be perfect , which is for me is not in reality.

While it may seem like the acceptable score on the CELBAN must be perfect, the skill requiring a near perfect score is listening, 10. At this time you are fortunate that a 10 is not required and all the skill areas. It is possible, that sometime in the future, the scores for reading, writing, and speaking will be increased. It is important to note that the required scores on the CELBAN are at a university level of English for reading, writing, listening and speaking. The scores are attainable, and have been reached by many Internationally Educated Nurses including those from the Philippines. The scores are attainable by you, if you believe in yourself. You must, however, be willing to do the work to turn your weaknesses into strengths, to develop your skills, to increase your vocabulary, and to improve your accuracy.

The medium of communication in Saudi Arabia is english and I dont have any problem there for 16 years,I’m just wondering why here in Canada we have difficulty reaching our dream to be a nurse.

In Saudi Arabia, the standard of English is I based on the fact that Internationally Educated Nurses come from many nations. In Canada the standard of English is based on the fact that you are now competing with nurses educated in Canada in English. 

When it comes to the English requirements of the provincial colleges of nursing, the scores are extremely high because they qualify as entrance exams to university courses. When you take an English exam for a provincial colleges of nursing, you are submitting a score to be considered whether or not you can take courses at a university level. The colleges of nursing have such high requirements to ensure that you are ready and capable to complete the course that are required of you. 
 
The reason why many people cannot get the required scores is because their English level is at a high school level. The required score for immigration to Canada is a high school level of English. The required score to become a professional in Canada is a university level of English. 
 
From my experience, I have seen two problems emerge for people educated in English from the Philippines. 
  • Unfortunately, from many people from the Philippines who have been educated in English, many are overconfident about their English level. Many think that the English is strong enough that they do not need extra courses to help them to pass and the English exam. They do not understand that their English is at a high school level, and why they cannot pass an English exam not understanding that the requirements are a university level.
  • Other people are concerned about finances. They do not want to spend money unnecessarily. They do not understand is that by investing in education and taking English classes and preparation classes they are more likely to achieve their dreams.

There are extremely wise people from the Philippines, who have understood that the need to turn their weaknesses in English into strengths. They’re willing to invest in themselves and in education knowing that when they do they not only enough themselves up, but they also lift up their families and their communities.  In doing so, they increase their income quicker. In doing so, they obtain all of their dreams quicker.

I think i have to redo (my CELBAN)all because that is the new policy of all the nursing body here in Canada ,if you fail one you have to redo all

The reason why you have to redo the whole exam when you fail one skill is because of how the CELBAN was created. The CELBAN was created with two parts: 

  1. The speaking component, where you enter the room and to meet two assessors. 
  2. The group component, where you enter a large room and take the test with other IENs. The group component consists of the written parts: reading, writing and listening. 

It is because of how the exam has been created that if you fail one part you must  redo all of it. This decision was made by the creators of the CELBAN and not the provincial colleges of nursing in Canada.

I know that my weakness is writing even before
The good thing for you, is that writing is my strength. I have had excellent professors teach me not only how to improve my writing but also how to help others to improve theirs. In partnership you and I can turn your weaknesses into strengths, but it will take a commitment from you to do the assignments, to integrate the feedback, and to practice every day. If you uphold your your side of the partnership, you will pass the writing portion of the CELBAN. 
 
I am really frustrated but I have to stand in the ground because of my husband and son and one more year I will be 5 years out of my profession as a nurse,thats why I really need to pass the CELBAN this time otherwise its an end.
This thing I know about you, G, is that although you stop and start: you are not a quitter. There’s something about nursing that is so important to you that despite the frustrations and disappointments you keep trying to find a way. When I started working with Internationally Educated Health Professionals I created a saying,
If what you are doing is not getting you to where you want to go; change what you’re doing.
 
If you quit, and give up, what will you say to your son when he decides to quit university, or piano lessons, because it is too hard. Which do you think will have more impact on him, 
 
  • ” Don’t quit! I gave up on my dream, and I regret it.” OR
  • ” I know it is hard. There were times that I wanted to quit. But I kept going. And now I am a nurse in Canada. If I could do it, you can do. It is our family legacy.”
Think of your son, and what you’ll say in the future when he is having a hard time, the next time you want to give up.
I know you can do it. You simply need to strengthen your skills. You simply need to understand how to turn your weaknesses into strengths. It will take time. It will take dedication. But you can do it. How do I know that? Because I have seen it time and time again: the transformation from poor writing to outstanding reports written within 20 minutes.
Are you committed to yourself, to your son, to your future?
Simply,
Kim

4 responses to “♥ I’m been through a lot of disappointments, depressions, heartache whatever you called it..

  1. Hi Kim,
    I already started the reading session,I completed the 3 scenarios, I got 1 wrong in each scenario, some deficiency in the comprehension part, but the skim and scan I did a perfect score. When do we start for the writing session?
    Thanks again.
    I’m just wondering how can you do that? I mean, giving a really one on one advice to everyone in the blog,you’re an amazing ,nice,gifted and caring person, I really can feel it.
    G

    • Dear G,

      The format for CELBANPrep reading and listening are to allow you to become more familiar with the exam, not to evaluate your skills. It is important that you read and listening to Canadian medical and nursing information, at increasing levels of difficulty until you are reading and listening at an advanced university level. If you get the Reading and Listening Study Guides for $4.99, there are some links and suggestions there.

      How do I do it? I wonder the same thing, some times. I knew there would be a day I would have to hire someone to help me, with the increased demand, and I mourned for that time even before it happened, knowing there would be nurses that came to CELBANPrep that I would not know. I started training two writing coaches in September. The most important thing to me was that they were also “amazing, nice, gifted and caring” people.

      So yes, for now I can give one-on-one advice to everyone on the blog, and through e-mails. But one day I won’t be able to do that either. But I will always create a way to connect with and meet the people who come to me. As one of my writing coaches would always say, “Inshallah”: meaning God willing.

      Thank you for taking notice. thank you for taking the time to comment. It is messages like this that keep me going, day after day, knowing there are thousands of nurses around the world that I may never meet but need a message of hope. Just as my message feed your heart and spirit, your messages feed mine.

      In Spirit of Gratitude,
      Kim

  2. Hi Kim,
    Thank you so much for your time to reply our emails.You know what? I am crying while I’;m reading your email,thank you so much for the encouragement. First ,why until now,after so many failures I’m still trying to kept on going? I love to serve people ,I wanted to help them ,to care for them,to give love. Esp. here in Canada this is my first job in a nursing home and I really love working with the elderly. Another thing, I wanted to serve Canada as one way of showing my gratitude that we are here now and we considered this place as our home. And this is the job that I feel Im happy of what Im doing.
    I hope this time with your help I can do it, really thank you for that.I will really put my time, and do my best. Again and again thank you. Waiting for the writing session with you.

    • Dear G,
      Technology really is a gift that allows us to touch the hearts and spirits of others: living near or far; those we know, and those we have yet to meet. I am grateful for the blessings I have received to be able to learn all that I have about using technology to create connections and sustain dreams. I am grateful for my grandma living so far away from me when I was young, encouraging me in my writing. And I am grateful to my professors who taught me how to write and how to teach other people to write. Finally I am grateful for the support I have received from IENs who have taken the risk of making a purchase online, trusting me. It is their financial investments that have allowed me to build what I have, and to continue to create new resources for Internationally Educated Professionals.seeking a home, and a better life, in Canada. It is their encouragement and their successes that have proven my methods to be effective. It is their successes and encouraging words that motivate me to continue on this path despite the many obstacles I have faced. And it is their faith and prayers that have helped me the most when I needed it.

      Now I have your messages, and your tears, to add to my treasure chest.

      Please create something with the emotions you are feeling: a letter to yourself, a painting, a poem. Or buy some special treasure to remind yourself of why you are doing this, why you are not a quitter so that the next time you think of stopping you have the courage to continue. Maybe all you need is a lovely picture of you, in your nursing uniform or working at the hospital to remind you what it is all about.

      I promise you, there will be many other times you will be given the opportunity to choose whether you stop, or whether you continue. Use your time and your emotions to build your strength and resilience, and your support system, so that you face each challenge with courage.

      Not everyone loves what they are doing, when nursing. If you do, it is a gift of knowledge that this is what you are on earth to do. Millions of people are out in the work trying to discover what they want to do, what they love, in jobs in which they hate or feel unfulfilled. How blessed you are to know!

      Have a great night, G.
      Sincerely,
      Kim

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