I first connected with the Devon Alliance for International Recruitment in October 2021 for a webinar which was host by Carly and Laura, from there I got an opportunity to host my own webinar with Carly regarding lessons that I learnt through the pandemic working as a Registered Nurse in my home country of Sri Lanka.
At this point I was studying to take the English Language assessment. When I took the exam, I missed the pass mark by 0.5. But the Devon Alliance arranged an interview for me none the less which was my first International Nursing interview, I was successful and they offered me a position at the Royal Devon University Healthcare Foundation Trust (Exeter). By this time, I had also started my NMC application, Carly always helped me through this process, however I also needed to pass the English qualification as soon as possible.
In Sri Lanka there is a of lack of properly trained OET trainers, I had to do two attempts because of the lack of understanding around correct training, but the Devon team didn’t lose me when I told my problems to Laura and Carly. They arranged a free course with Specialist Language Courses which was accredited by OET preparation. This course was really good and I was well prepared through the OET B Course. In addition, I also got the chance to attend a course from Premedical English which also accredited for OET training.
In June 2022 my sister passed away giving me sudden emotional shock, but the whole of the Devon team stood by my side encouraging me to concentrate on studies for OET. I am so blessed to have people like them in my life. By the end in September 2022, I passed my OET exam with thanks to SLC and the Devon Alliance. In December 2022 I did my CBT exam, again I got support from Carly when trying to find a CBT exam centre in Sri Lanka to take the exam. I passed my CBT exam at my first attempt and fulfilled all the requirements to be a Staff Nurse in UK. I am so grateful to the Devon Alliance for International Recruitment for taking me through this hard journey. I got my letter of sponsorship from Royal Devon University Healthcare Foundation Trust (Exeter) which was facilitated by Emily, another member of this wonderful team. She also helped me with my visa application and the documents required for the hospital. I should also mention Victoria Stone and Tracey Collins who are wonderful members of the team helping and encouraging me through this journey.
Now I am in happy-go-lucky in Exeter in my accommodation provided by Royal Devon University Healthcare Foundation Trust (Exeter). I am so grateful and blessed to have met this wonderful recruitment team who are doing ethical recruitment, helping thousands of international qualified nurses to start new life in UK. My advice to all international nurses is to follow this wonderful team, stay connected with them they’ll never lose you if you a qualified nurse. And also work hard for OET or IELTS exam, train well from properly accredited OET or IETLS trainers and work hard to achieve your dream. If I am able to achieve this dream, every international nurse can also achieve this dream.
Best of Luck,
Nalin Gamini Thilakarathne.
A Nurse from Sri Lanka