HOLYOKE, Mass (WWLP) – The Western Massachusetts Nursing Collaborative held an event called “Appreciate Nurses Now, Inspire Nurses for the Future” to honor nurses for everything they’ve done during the pandemic and beyond.

Pre-pandemic, the World Health Organization designated 2020 as the “Year of the Nurse and the Midwife” to recognize the role of nurses in the healthcare system. Because of COVID, nurses weren’t able to celebrate their contributions to healthcare.

“It’s so important to know and recognize that they’re among the people that have kept us going through this pandemic,” said Diane Brunelle, the co-chair of the Western Massachusetts Nursing Collaborative.

As a result, the Year of the Nurse was extended through 2025.

The event at the Delaney House was the first time the group has been able to get together face to face, since the pandemic began.