Let’s Meet Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole
Let’s Meet Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole. This is a conversation between two great women. As this script was requested by a nurse who is going out to train student nurses in Sierra Leone, the text is not at Key Stage I level. It can, however, be easily simplified to meet the needs of younger children.
5-minute script plus 5-minute quiz.
Florence: But it wasn’t just the war we were both up against, right?
Mary: Right! We both had other battles to fight!
Florence: And you more than most. Fancy being refused as a nurse – purely because of the colour of your skin? Disgraceful!
Mary: Yes, that was hard to take. I mean, just because I was of mixed race – what difference should that make?
Florence: In a sane world, none. But we’re talking about Victorian times when skin colour could still go against you.
Mary: Crazy! Just because my mother was Jamaican and my father Scottish. He actually served in the British army.
Florence: And your mother taught you those wonderful African cures for tropical illnesses. I wish I had had that kind of support from home.
Mary: What? Your parents didn’t stand by you?
Florence: Oh no, I didn’t mean that. I came from a very loving home …
Florence: But it really wasn’t the done thing for young ladies of my background to go into nursing!