A Fond Farewell to an Award Winning Health Visitor10th October 2022
The South Eastern Health & Social Care Trust has said a fond farewell to Health Visitor and Infant Feeding Coordinator, Lesley McKeown after a nursing career which spanned over 39 years.
In 1983, Lesley began her training in the Royal Victoria Hospital and worked as a staff nurse within the Burns and Plastics Unit for over five years. Lesley then decided to undertake her midwifery training in 1990 and became a qualified Midwife based in the Maternity Ward in the Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast. In 1998 Lesley started her Health Visiting training and by 2001, Lesley joined the South Eastern Trust as a Health Visitor working across the Down and Lisburn areas.
Throughout her career, Lesley has undertaken a range of roles, including Health Visitor, Teacher Practitioner and the Community Infant Feeding Lead for Public Health Nursing. She worked as part of the Lisburn Health Visiting Team based in Aghalee Surgery for a number of years.
A highlight of Lesley’s career was achieving the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative Gold Award, during the Covid-19 Pandemic. Lesley led the Community Public Health Nursing Team within the Trust along with the Community Breastfeeding Steering Group, ensuring that every mother across the Trust area received infant feeding support from their Health Visitor, with additional specialist support if required.
Commenting on her career, Lesley said, “Throughout my career I worked with so many amazing people and alongside some wonderful teams. Nursing is so diverse and everyone I have worked with is so passionate and dedicated to their roles. Working with the Health Visiting teams in the South Eastern Trust was fabulous and I will still be doing bank shifts for the Trust as and when I am needed, so I will still be able to see all my fabulous and dedicated colleagues.
“I have loved spending time catching up with my friends and just recently my first grandchild was born, who is a wonderful new addition to our family.”
Lead Nurse in Public Health, Helen Leigh added “Lesley was instrumental in the Health Visiting Service, achieving and maintaining the prestigious UNICEF Baby Friendly Initiative Gold Award. She has a real passion for breastfeeding.
“She will be greatly missed by all the staff and we wish her health and happiness to enjoy spending more time with her family, particularly her new grandchild!.”