Tony Volpe Award 2014

Dr. Nazik Nurelhuda recieves the Tony Volpe Award 2014

Image shows: Dr Nazik Nurelhuda receiving the 2014 Tony Volpe award presented by Tony Volpe (Left) (Trustee of the GCDFund) and Stanley Bergman (right) (Chairman and CEO, Henry Schein, Inc.)

Dr. Nurelhuda is the Assistant Professor of Dental Public Health at the University of Khartoum  - Sudan. With her extensive experience working with schoolchildren and children with special needs in oral health promotion programmes, she is currently rolling out a project with the University of Khartoum to deliver preventive services to mothers and children through dental homes.

Dr. Nurelhuda’s research work has focused primarily on the areas of health systems, health policy and eHealth, where she advocated within the ministry of health and with other key stakeholders on the importance of maximizing the benefits from ICTs in healthcare development.

Dr. Nurelhuda commented on her experience at the Senior Dental Leaders Conference:

"SDL 8 was a remarkable experience. The networking opportunity cannot be compared to any other meeting I have attended. To meet this many dental leaders, all passionate about improving oral health in children, was refreshing. The faculty was exceptional and inspiring. Delegates attended from all around the globe – from the Fiji Islands through Australia, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines and China, all the way to Kenya, Tanzania and Sudan onto Ireland, USA and Mexico.

It was enlightening to discover that at a global level, the challenges facing dentistry are all somehow similar. However, the obstacles we all face in overcoming these challenges varied from place to place. In Sudan, there is Political unrest and braindrain; in Fiji the ocean itself is a great divider; and in Tanzania, there is a critical shortage in the health workforce.

Another special aspect about this programme was that the common dialogue of the global north advising the global south over their problems was not emphasized. In the group sessions, representatives from both high and low income countries openly discussed their challenges and learnt through experience sharing.

This break from my normal work activities was first time I have spent five days back to back considering the matters that are dear to my heart: children, oral health, public health, health education and how to make things happen in Sudan. I am extremely grateful for the few minutes in Dubai when I first met Professor Raman Bedi and he informed me about SDL. And I am all the more grateful for the Tony Volpe award for giving me this opportunity.  This award did not only provided me with a life changing experience, but also helped me motivate many to put Sudan on their oral health agendas."