2022 Winner – Cheshire Woman of the Year
Pauline Finlay is a specialist Nurse Prescriber working in a small practice looking after about 400 homeless patients in Chester. Although affluent, Chester has a relatively large homeless population and many of them find it hard to interact with other parts of the healthcare system. Pauline works above and beyond her role to facilitate the care for her patients, including accompanying vulnerable people to hospital and other services which otherwise they probably wouldn’t attend.
She has sympathy and empathy for her homeless patients, many of whom have substance misuse and mental health problems. She visits local hospitals to see patients and to make sure their often challenging needs are being considered whilst in hospital and when they are being discharged. She will support patients through the criminal justice system – which is often very stressful for herself.
Alongside this work, she also does all the traditional chronic disease management that you would expect of a nurse practitioner. Like many NHS staff, she is devoted to her job and takes every opportunity to provide care and attention way beyond the delivery of clinical service. In recent years, as the pandemic has caused further pressures for everyone, for homeless people already marginalised, their individual circumstances have worsened. Pauline’s response was to work harder to try and support individuals by contacting agencies to help with all aspects from food to counselling. She has been a particular force in recognising the gaps in provision for homeless women and has brought agencies together to focus on improving female specific support and access.
In short, whether it’s the care of an individual or the wider issues, she makes a difference to the community she serves. And in recognition she was awarded the Queens Nursing award 2021 for outstanding service and we are delighted to make her our Cheshire Woman of the Year 2022.
Guest Speaker – Rachel Burden
The Cheshire Woman Award Committee is delighted to welcome Rachel as our guest for the first time. It has become somewhat of a tradition for presenters from BBC North West to join us at the annual awards ceremony. We are extremely grateful for their support and delighted that 2022 is Rachel’s turn after the somewhat enforced break during the past 3 years!
Rachel was born in Marlow, Buckinghamshire. Her mum worked full time looking after five children, and her dad was a journalist. Rachel has always had a love of radio and after studying history and politics at Trinity College, Dublin, she went on to complete a Broadcast Journalism Diploma at Cardiff University.
Her first job was at BBC Radio Suffolk and she has worked for the BBC ever since, with a stint at BBC Radio Bristol before moving to Radio 5 Live in 2003. Rachel has hosted the Breakfast show since 2010 for which she and her co-host won a Gold Aria award in 2018. She has travelled widely for the network, broadcasting from Rome, Dublin, Kenya, New Zealand and South Africa…. and her spare bedroom earlier this year when she had Covid!
Rachel moved to Cheshire in 2011 when the BBC relocated to Salford and lives surrounded by countryside with her husband, four children, a cat and a dog. As a very busy working mother, Rachel is perfectly placed to appreciate the achievements of the remarkable women here today. When she’s not working, Rachel can mostly be found walking through the fields near her home, in the local pub, or at Sale Sharks rugby club.
Nominees of 2022 and their guests
Pauline Finlay - 2022 Winner
Sandra Link - Lifetime Achievement Award
Lisa Kuhwald - Winner 2018
Lisa Luscombe, Pat Ross-Davies, Kate Verdin-Walsh
Christine Youngman - Lifetime Achievement Award
Nominees unable to attend: Nisha Katona, Gina Martin, Christine Hughes, Claire Goaten & Doreen Maczewski