|Archbishop Tutu gives inspirational address at St. Peter’s Hospital|
|Written by Communications Team|
Ashford and St. Peter’s Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust was honoured and privileged to be visited by Archbishop Desmond Tutu earlier this week, as part of an initiative to ensure that equalities are at the heart of the organisation.
The visit was part of a ‘Conversations for Change’ workshop that the trust held in partnership with the Tutu Foundation UK. Archbishop Tutu’s daughter, Reverend Mpho Tutu, joined the workshop earlier in the day, to talk about the Foundation’s ‘Ubuntu’ principles. Ubuntu is an ancient African philosophy that emphasises the importance of the community, expressing how we interconnect and our common humanity.
Picture shows: Archbishop Desmond Tutu (centre) is greeted by (L to R), Trust Chairman Aileen McLeish, Chief Executive Andrew Liles, Director of Workforce & Organisational Development Raj Bhamber and Dr Isaac John, Deputy Director Research & Development and Equality and Diversity Champion
Archbishop Tutu closed the day with an inspirational address to workshop attendees and other guests from the Trust and partner organisations. He said: “We need each other so that each of us makes up what is lacking in the other – that is what Ubuntu means. Our world is marked far too much by inequity. When will we learn that our prosperity depends on how we work together?”
Speaking about the NHS, he said “You are part of an incredible movement – a movement of healing a world that is hurting, when so many are feeling excluded.”
Trust Chief Executive Andrew Liles said: “I would like to thank Archbishop Tutu for honouring us with his address, which was both moving and energizing. It served to remind us all how important the equality agenda is and how we need to work together to make sure it is at the heart of our organisation.
“Fairness, compassion and equality have to be central to everything we do, for patients and for staff. I am particularly proud we are able to celebrate 38 different ethnic origins amongst our staff, and diversity is our strength.”
Equality and diversity champions from across the organisation attended the ‘Conversations for Change’ workshop, to prepare the Trust for transition from the previous Single Equality Scheme to a new Equality Delivery System (EDS) framework.