What do you see in the world around you?

Preached on August 13th 2008.

Almost one hundred years ago two women died. On this day, in 1910, Florence Nightingale’s life ended. On this day, in 1912, Octavia Hill gave up the ghost.

Both of these women had looked at the world as it was in their day, found it lacking, and set about changing things.

Florence had seen suffering people, and had taken to nursing. As her career progressed she saw more and more people suffering and dying. Famously, she went to the Crimea and worked tirelessly in some real hell holes. She spent time and effort investigating why these people were dying. When she could show that over crowding and insanitary conditions were causing more soldiers to die in hospitals than wounds inflicted by enemy action, she invested her efforts into getting hospitals designed differently and introduced professional training for nurses.

Octavia saw poor people with inadequate housing and no green spaces to enjoy. She campaigned about these issues and set up schemes for leasing good quality housing to those who had been living in slums. She was one of the founder members of what became the National Trust, with the aim of securing green spaces for everybody to be able to enjoy, regardless of whether or not they could pay for the privilege.

Continued here…

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