Red Cross Honours NZ Nurse
Aucklander Marianne Whittington has been awarded the Red Cross’s highest nursing honour, the Florence Nightingale Medal. Whittington has undertaken 11 international aid missions for the organisation in the last 17 years, including dangerous assignments to Afghanistan, Sudan and Angola. “She has taken three missions to Afghanistan during and after the Taliban’s rule,” said Red Cross operations manager Andrew McKie. “They were conducted under difficult circumstances, given the position of the International Committee of Red Cross and of female aid workers in particular. For her to volunteer during these times demonstrates her commitment to the Red Cross.” Only 50 Florence Nightingale medals are awarded internationally every two years. Whittington is the 23rd New Zealand nurse to receive the honour since 1920. She was awarded the New Zealand Red Cross international service award in 2005.