Click PLAY ▶ below. Listen to the interview with Maile and Brian!
Maile has a YouTube account! Check it out - https://www.youtube.com/c/ZoomiesAbroad
My name is Maile, I am mental health RN. I came to New Zealand in July 2021 from the United States.
The process to come to NZ took us years, honestly, because before we moved, we paid off debt and saved up money. It took me a year to get my NZ nursing registration. I first started the CGFNS process in May 2020, and we moved here July 2021, so it has not been a quick process.
The easiest part of the process was finding a job and the most challenging part of the process was getting CGFNS to approve all the paperwork. ACCENT made everything simple and led me step by step through the process. I had Kristen and she was great.
I remember seeing rainbows nearly every day when we first got here, and the trees were so different. I also remember being impressed by how nice everyone was. It's a more laid-back lifestyle, and people are really friendly. It's also hard to beat the beauty of living on the South Island. I think the best parts of NZ are the work life balance, and the nature and wildlife. The South Island is amazing, wild, rugged, and breath-taking.
What I like about the area I live in is the nature and the wildlife. Dunedin is a great city, with lots of good restaurants and cafes, but it’s also beautiful. You can get to 10 different beaches within a 15-minute drive, or go for a hike, or go mountain biking, or simply find an amazing view. For an outdoor lover like myself and my husband, we are in paradise.
Our next trip is to the North Island to visit friends, but we are reallly excited to go to Steward Island and to see the birds. We also hope to hike Roy's Peak when the weather gets warmer.
My advice if you are planning to come to NZ is to be patient. It can take a while, and you will have moments where you might feel it will never happen, but just stay patient and know that when things do start to happen, it can happen very quickly. So do all your preparations now, instead of at the end.
The work/life balance made a difference to my life because I am so much more relaxed in my daily life, and it's easy to take multiple trips a year. I have a lot of free time to do the things I love, such as exploring the South Island and getting outside. I miss my family the most.
The hardest part for me was getting adjusted to a new health system, with different medication names, different abbreviations, and different slang. My first few weeks I asked a lot of questions and learned a lot very quickly. It also took some time to get used to the many accents on my ward. I still do very similar work, but it's also different in most ways because it's in a different country. Keeping an open mind and reminding myself that I wasn't going to be able to adjust within a few short weeks really helped. In many ways, my first few months of nursing here felt like I was a new nurse learning the ropes again.
Being a nurse in a country that does not have the litigation culture that the US does, has been a huge relief. It's more relaxing to work here, and patients and families in general are more respectful of health care workers. I find that doctors are a lot more friendly and down to earth here as well.