A midwife has been honoured for her work supporting refugees in war-torn Ukraine.

Wendy Warrington, from Tottington, has now been shortlisted for a Royal College of Midwives award for outstanding contribution to midwifery services.

She has been nominated in the international category after spending 183 days on the Polish/Ukrainian border delivering vital aid and healthcare to women and children caught up in the conflict.

Ms Warrington said: “I really am quite humbled to be shortlisted.

“There are so many midwives who are so deserving, so it really does mean a lot.

Bury Times: Wendy Warrington delivering midwifery careWendy Warrington delivering midwifery care (Image: Bolton NHS Foundation Trust)

“I joined the NHS when I was 18 and have spent 30 years working as a midwife, I’ve always been passionate about working with women that need that extra bit of support.”

Ms Warrington’s three decades of experience in the NHS put her in good stead to in effect become a community midwife in Ukraine and Poland, where she used her expertise to work with doctors from around the world and major organisations such as the Red Cross.

After arriving at a refugee point near to the border, she worked in satellite clinics where she worked with pregnant women who had crossed into Poland to ensure they were getting the right health care after days of travelling.

Ms Warrington said: “I tried to offer them reassurance and comfort.

“Many of them were traumatised after suddenly being forced to flee their homes with only the clothes they were wearing.

“One day they were living their lives, the next they’re fleeing the brutal outbreak of war.”

Bury Times: Wendy Warrington in a refugee centreWendy Warrington in a refugee centre (Image: Bolton NHS Foundation Trust)

She added: “I could see their stress and anxiety and many of these women told me they hadn’t felt their babies move for some days.

“I listened to them and offered them my care, their shoulders dropped as we both listened to their babies’ heartbeat.

“I’ve stayed in touch with some of the families and I’ve seen their babies grow.

“When I return I’m now able to offer them antenatal care and support them with breastfeeding and sensory techniques.”

But her trips were not without risks.

The grandmother said: “I’m 56 with five grandkids to think about, so of course family was at the forefront of my mind, I’m not a hero.

“The sleepless nights and the danger are worthwhile when you see the real difference it makes and that’s what motivated me to continue volunteering my time to help those who had lost and continue to lose so much.”

Ms Warrington also said she felt compelled to help as she has family living in Poland, while her grandfather moved to the UK after being liberated from Auschwitz at the end of the Second World War.

On her return she has now re-joined Bolton NHS Foundation Trust as a bank and future legacy midwife.

She said: “My time in Ukraine changed me as a person.

“The things I have seen had such an impact, but I knew I wanted to return to my roots as a midwife to help women and make sure no matter what their life circumstances are they get the best possible care.”

The winners will be revealed at a special awards ceremony in London on the 19 May 2023.