22nd May 2020
It is with great sadness that we share news of the death of a dear colleague, friend and Fellow of the Institute of Health Visiting – Judith Nembhard.
Judith was one of those people who lit up a room – she was a passionate health visitor who held firm to her belief that the world could, and should, be a better place.
Judith was driven to be a “voice for those that have no voice” – the poorest and most disadvantaged in our society. She never settled for second best and was an outspoken advocate for health visiting and the importance of giving every child the best start in life.
Judith always put others before herself. Despite struggling with a terminal illness that she chose to keep private; Judith was still freely giving her time to support others as an iHV Leadership Mentor, alongside her very busy role as Professional Lead Health Visiting/Care Group Manager (0-5yrs) at Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust.
Only a few weeks before her death Judith was in regular contact with us at the iHV, sharing her concerns about the challenges that families and health visitors were facing during the COVID pandemic. In passing she mentioned that she was on sick leave, but she played this down, and instead she was full of ideas and solutions to make a positive difference. Rather poignantly, her closing words in her last message to us were,
“would love to make a change for our workforce”.
These words epitomise Judith and how we will remember her – alongside her fabulous smile and ability to bring people together.
Judith, we will miss you – you were a force for good in this world. May you rest in peace and know that your health visiting family will pick up your baton to challenge inequality and ensure every child has the best start in life. You leave big shoes to fill.
We send our deepest condolences to her family, friends and colleagues.