Meet Sarah Rubino: Our Aurora Fellow in South Sudan
Sarah knew she wanted to be a midwife the day her mom went into labor with her youngest sister. She was eight at the time. Fast forward several years and Sarah is now a registered nurse and midwife. She is also one of CMMB’s Aurora Fellows and international volunteers! In May 2018, she and her husband, Martin Rubino, will travel to Nzara, South Sudan to serve at St. Theresa Hospital. Read on to learn more about Sarah, including what she is most proud of and who inspires most in the world.
Where is home: Born and raised in Pataskala, Ohio, USA. Currently I am living wherever my husband’s job takes us!
Education: I earned my Bachelor of Science in nursing at Wheeling Jesuit University in Wheeling, West Virginia and my Masters of Science in Nursing through the Community-Based Nurse-Midwidery Education Program at Frontier Nursing University in Hyden, Kentucky. My dream is to get my Doctorate in Nursing Practice in the next few years.
CMMB volunteer post: I will be serving at St. Theresa Hospital for twelve months in Nzara, South Sudan.
If you were asked to sum yourself up in two words, which two would you choose? Determined and empathetic.
Why did you choose CMMB? CMMB resonates with me because it shares two values I seek in an organization; a commitment to improving the lives of women and children, and a firm integration into the communities being served. Since my time in Kenya, the desire to work with vulnerable communities has been a driving force, motivating me to become a registered nurse and to continue my education as a nurse-midwife. I saw the particularly devastating impact poverty and lack of resources have on expectant mothers and their babies, and how training and education can go a long way in reducing some of the risks caused by often preventable afflictions. My desire to contribute to the work of an organization like CMMB played a major role in why I chose my profession. I hope to help further the progress made in decreasing maternal and neonatal mortality in undeserved communities and can learn a great deal from CMMB’s long history in this field.
What are you most proud of? I reached my goal of returning to eastern Africa as a nurse-midwife to serve for an extended period of time, all before I turned 30. I never dreamed that I would reach my goal this fast!
Imagine you are stuck in an elevator. Who would you most like to be stuck with? And why? Hands down, Malala Yousafzai. She is such a strong inspiring young woman, and I would love to have the opportunity to sit and have a conversation with her. I believe that sometimes people put others on a pedestal because they believe that the other person is almost inhumanly strong and that they themselves can never obtain that strength and courage to speak out and do what is right (I am guilty of that as well.) By having an everyday conversation with her, Malala would be real to me – she was an average, everyday girl, who chose to speak out and do what was right despite the cost.
You are featured in the NY Times or your national newspaper. What’s the headline? “Never Underestimate the Determination of a Child.”
What would be your theme song? “May it be” by Enya.
Imagine if you were an instrument, which would you be and why? I would be a violin. A violin has such a beautiful rich sound that can hit high and low notes with such clarity and tone and can elicit powerful emotions from the listener. I have the privilege of assisting in bringing babies into this world, and the feeling I get from that experience is very similar to the feeling I get when I hear violins play, especially listening to Pachelbel’s Canon!
What is your hope for your experience volunteering with CMMB? Delivering babies into this world has been a truly rewarding experience. As a nurse-midwife, I help women maintain healthy pregnancies, then have the reward of helping to bring their babies into the world. It is amazing to hold a baby, moments after their first breath, and to think of all the potential she or he has. A major part of my profession involves working with my hands, and as a volunteer I have and will continue to use my hands to improve the lives of those in need. But I also hope to further the work with my hands through education – by building the capacity of the people around me.
Favorite quote: “And pain, beauty’s just a word without you”- Rachael Lampa
What book should everyone read? Why? Chiara Corbella Petrillo’s A Witness to Joy. It is the true story about a young wife and mother. She lost two babies shortly after their birth, and while pregnant with her third child, she found out that she had a malignant tumor that ultimately took her life. This story shows how Chiara radiated joy throughout these trials of life, and is a good example of how peace is present in both life and death.
Who would you like to play you in the movie of your life? Jennifer Lawrence
What is your hope for the future? Whatever trajectory my career path as a nurse-midwife takes me, my purpose will always be to improve the pre- and postnatal care of mothers and babies. I hope to help further the progress made in decreasing maternal and neonatal mortality in undeserved communities.
Favorite speech ever: There isn’t one particular speech, but it is inspiring to hear Rwandan genocide survivor Immaculee Ilibagiza talk about her experience with the power of forgiveness.
If you could solve one world problem, what would it be? To somehow solve the problem that people don’t recognize the inherent dignity and worth of every human person.
What are the three things you are most grateful for?
• My husband Martin
• The connection I have with my family and friends
• All the teachers I have had in my life
Who is your biggest inspiration? Why? Saint Teresa of Calcutta because she kept her faith throughout her period of darkness. The fact that she had such strong internal anguish and was still able to continue her mission continues to inspire me.