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Alberta Foundation for Nursing Research
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Dates of existence
The Alberta Foundation for Nursing Research, (AFNR), was created by the government of Peter Lougheed after the establishment of the Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research, (AHFNR). Nurses lobbied for the inclusion of nursing research in the AHFNR, and in 1982 the AFNR was created with the help of the Alberta Heritage Fund through oil revenues and a 3 million dollar gift from the provincial government. The AFNR initially operated as a committee of the Department of Advanced Research and was financed for $1-million over a period of five years, with the funding renewed in 1987. Dr. Shirley M. Stinson, the first nurse in Alberta to earn a Doctoral degree, was the inaugural chair of the foundation from 1982-1988.
The AFNR consisted of a Board of three members representing the general public; two representatives of the University of Alberta; two representatives of the University of Lethbridge; two representatives of the Alberta Association of Registered Nurses; one representative of the Alberta Public Health Association and one representative of the Alberta Health Care Association. Additionally, there were three advisory committees to the Board: The Scientific Review Committee, which reviewed applications for grants and awards and made recommendations; the Public Relations Committee, which identified, coordinated, and provided public relations requirements of the AFNR including news releases and annual reports; the Ad Hoc Evaluation Committee, which maintained a data base by documenting projects and the impact of those projects on the Province of Alberta and reporting annually to the Board.
The mandate of the AFNR was to: enhance the expertise and competence of nurses in the design and conduct of research projects; to increase the number of nursing research projects related to nursing practice; to increase the opportunities for nurses and nursing students to develop their potential in research; to increase the awareness of nurses in Alberta about the importance of nursing research in developing and extending nursing knowledge; to communicate to the public the importance of nursing research in improving patient care; to encourage development of projects which incorporate innovations in the organization and delivery of nursing care.
The AFNR was meant to finance research projects developed by nurses in Alberta that had already met the standards of peer review, and was the only research funding organization exclusively for nursing in the entire country. The establishment of the AFNR led to the creation of a doctoral education program in the province due to the development of faculty expertise. Due to the success of the Foundation, the government recommended that the Foundation become a separate legal entity supported by provincial funding by April 1, 1990.
In 1994 the provincial government announced that, due to cutbacks initiated by Premier Ralph Klein, funding for the AFNR would be withdrawn, forcing the members of the Board of Directors to decide the future of the Foundation. Minimal funding was provided by the government in 1994 and so the AFNR commissioned an evaluation of the Foundation, after which the Board of Directors eventually came to the decision to terminate its operations.
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Provincial Archives of Alberta