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Behind the Veil…..life in Saudi Arabia

LInkedin Image



I had always known I wanted to be a Nurse!IMG_1673 edited2


As a child I spent a few stints in hospital and despite feeling ill or in pain, I followed the Nurses on their rounds, fascinated by the Pumps, Needles (I know…born to be a Nurse right??!!) and everything else going on around me.

The other thing I’ve always known is that I wanted to travel!

…………and travel I did!!!


Nursing may be one of the best professions in the world to travel with and I can definitely attest to that. I have worked as a Nurse in Australia, Scotland, Ireland, England, Portugal, Abu Dhabi and of course…Saudi Arabia.


Saudi was on my radar for a very long time, maybe even before I started my Nurse training. As luck would have it, one of my managers had spent quite a few years working as a Nurse in Saudi and was able to give me a great insight into life in Saudi before I decided to take the plunge.


A quick phone call to CCM Recruitment and 3 months later I was on a flight to the Magic Kingdom of Saudi Arabia!


So Why Saudi?

Saudi intrigued me! The Arabian Peninsula holds a sort of mystery and excitement like no place else and I wanted to explore it! (Salary paid tax free also has a nice ring to it, let’s be honest!)


And Why choose King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre?

I attended a workshop at CCM Recruitment’s office in Dublin and the presentation given by the Director of Recruitment from the King Faisal bowled me over. KFSHRC is a tertiary medical and research facility in the capital city if Riyadh. It is the national referral centre for Oncology, Organ Transplantation, Cardiovascular Disease and Genetic Diseases.

During my interview I was offered the opportunity for further training and development in a new specialty, Paediatrics, due to my previous experience working with children with complex care needs.

The benefits package offered along with the additional training was just too good to turn down. My decision to accept was a “No Brainer”


So what’s it really like to work there?

Working in Saudi is so different to anywhere I’ve ever worked. I worked alongside people from over 50 different countries. One of my favourite things that we used to do on the ward was pot luck dinners to welcome new staff or for Masalamas (going away parties). Everyone would bring a meal and usually there would be a vast array of Pancit from the Philippines, Curry from India, Irish stew from Ireland (that was my dish) to name just a few.

Workwise, the basic nursing principles are the same. However, the model used is based on the American system so accreditation with JCI and Magnet are a major focus. I got some great experience working on the Unit Based Council monitoring KPIs and Quality initiatives.

Orientation is in depth and incorporates everything from IT systems to up skilling in the High Tech Simulation Lab. You are mentored until you have completed all competencies and are comfortable with taking your own patient load.

Nurse: Patient ratio is 1:3 on days and 1:4 on nights. A BIG difference to the workload I was used to at home!


What about the language barrier?

You don’t have to speak Arabic to work at the King Faisal. It is an English speaking hospital which means all notes, medications, signs etc. are in English and all Medical Personnel communicate through English. If a patient or a relative doesn’t speak English there is always someone around to help translate. I picked up quite a bit of Arabic during my two years there and could happily hold a conversation in basic Arabic. Just another string to add to my bow!


What challenges did you face?

The Saudi culture is very different to my own so I had to learn a lot about their beliefs and customs. A little education goes a long way and spending a little time learning about their culture helped me to be more patient and understanding in my daily practice and life.

Not being allowed to drive was initially a minor inconvenience but the hospital provide an excellent taxi service for its employees and once I had established a good rapport with one of the drivers, I could rely him to collect me at any time of the day or night so I was never stuck.


So what about a social life?

I could honestly say I had a better social life in Saudi than I do now back here in Ireland. Life in Saudi is what you make it and I made the most of every opportunity to get out and about and meet people from every walk of life.

I played Gaelic Football, attended events at embassies and other compounds, went for spectacular walks through the desert, spent time by the pool on my days off, hit a few balls at the driving range around the corner from the hospital and with 54 days annual leave every year, I globe trotted to my heart’s content!

There are some fantastic restaurants in Riyadh with a choice of any type of cuisine you fancy. Arabic, Lebanese, Turkish, Chinese, Thai, Indian, Sushi, American plus there is even a Chocolate Café that does the most amazing CHOCOLATE PIZZA!!!


Do you have to cover your face?

This is a major misconception people have of Saudi Arabia. Ex-pat women do not have to cover their faces. When you go out to the malls or wherever, you are expected to wear an Abaya (long black dress like garment) and I always carried a scarf in my bag in case I was asked to cover my hair (which happened very rarely). I was in their country after all so it was important to respect their culture.

Let’s clear up a few other misconceptions while we’re at it:

  1. Yes ex-pat women can go out alone
  2. No you don’t need a male chaperone
  3. Yes you can keep your passport (except when your visa is being renewed which takes 3-5 days)


What ways has living and working in Saudi Arabia enriched your life?

  • I made some great friends that I’ll have for life
  • I gained professional experience that has opened doors for me in ways that I never thought possible
  • I got to travel to exotic destinations such as the Maldives, Sri Lanka, Petra…………..
  • Living and working with so many different nationalities was a fantastic experience
  • The amazing memories and stories!


What are the top 5 highlights of your time in Saudi?

  1. Playing Football with Naomh Alee GAA Club
  2. Travelling to the Farzan Islands off the coast of Saudi Arabia
  3. Snorkelling in the Red Sea off the coast of Jeddah
  4. Hiking through the Red Sands
  5. Saudi Breakfast on a Friday morning at work with our Saudi colleagues


Moving to Saudi Arabia was one of the best things I have ever done in my life. I made some great memories with some amazing people. Both my personal and professional life have taken a turn for the better as a result of working in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

It truly is the “Magic Kingdom”


If you are a nurse and the thought of sampling the exotic delights of the Saudi Arabia is something, which interests you submit your cv today. If career progression, travel opportunities, or earning some extra cash is top of your agenda, King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre can offer all of this and MORE. Take the first step into this exciting adventure today and submit your cv today visit http://www.ccmrecruitment.com  or find us on Facebook

Nursing Interviews King Faisal Specialist Hospital, November 2016

King Faisal

The King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre provides the highest level of specialized healthcare in an integrated educational and research setting. It is a state-of-the-art Magnet and Joint Commission International Accredited (JCIA) tertiary care medical research and academic facility located in Saudi Arabia. KFSHRC, Riyadh is a 936 bed tertiary care facility with an additional 360 beds onsite at the brand new state of the art King Abdullah Center for Cancer and Liver Disease.

KFSH&RC provides advanced education and training to health care professionals in a multi-disciplinary academic environment and endeavors to bring forward the finest in Hospital leadership and staff through dynamic educational programs.

Follow your passion in Nursing, while taking advantage of professional development opportunities with this leading hospital. Sign-up for 1 or 2 years however and you can easily attain that deposit for your first house. Already a highly experienced Nurse, Sister, Manager, with your own home? How about paying off that mortgage within 2 years?


  • Salaries (paid tax-free)
  • Accommodation Provided
  • Free Utilities
  • 54-Days Annual Leave
  • Vacation Flights
  • Sign On Bonus
  • End of Service Bonus
  • Fantastic Facilities for Staff (Gym, Swimming Pool, etc)
  • Extensive Orientation for New Staff
  • Excellent Training & Education Opportunities
  • Free Uniforms
  • Free Healthcare
  • A Vibrant Expatriate Social Life


Interview And Presentation  Taking Place In November In Dublin & London

For more information  Email CV to Roisin at roisin@ccmrecruitment.com OR Call: 00353 1 8366092 or UK Freephone 08002796149


Whether it’s career progression, travel opportunities or to earn some extra cash that is top of your agenda, King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre can offer all of this and MORE.


Take the first step into this exciting adventure today and submit your cv today Fulfill your sense of adventure and take one or two years (or more) out to experience life in a foreign land. Excellent opportunities for career advancement and  further education


  Yes, follow your passion…and plan for the future!

CCM Recruitment International are attending the Critical Care Collaborative 2016 in Melbourne

Come meet us in Melbourne

August 26th

Rydges on Swanston

Critical Care Aug Melbourne - web banner v2

CCM Recruitment International will be attending the Critical Care Collaborative 2016 hosted by the Australian College of Critical Care Nurses.

Come and talk to us during the event to discuss employment opportunities in critical and intensive care overseas.

We have vacancies in a range of hospitals in the Middle East, including the new state of the art hospital – Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi. All hospitals are internationally accredited and are looking to hire nurses from Australia and New Zealand. In addition to being part of an international team, benefits will include; accommodation, transportation allowance, health insurance, travel allowance and a generous annual leave package. The Middle East also offers great travel opportunities and social lifestyle.

We look forward to seeing you in Melbourne to discuss your world of options. Contact us prior to the event for more information by email or phone; Dawn dawn@ccmrecruitment.com.au or Sarah sarah@ccmrecruitment.com.au

AUS Free Call 1800 818 844 or NZ Free Call 0800 700 839

Please note that our clients will only allocate us visas for applicants from Europe, Australia, New Zealand, the USA and Canada. Work visas are issued on the basis of our Recruitment Agency locations. If you do not hold a passport from one of these regions we regret that we cannot process your application.

GAA World Games

GAA World Games 2016

GAA World Games 2016

Some of the CCM Team with Abu Dhabi Na Fianna Chairman Gerard McGettrick, who are taking part in the games

Some of the CCM Team with Abu Dhabi Na Fianna Chairman Gerard McGettrick, who are taking part in the games

The GAA World Games is a competition that recognises the expansion of Gaelic games across the globe. Over the past 10 years, there has been almost a 100% growth in the number of GAA clubs located and operating outside of Ireland. There is now more than 400 clubs in existence.The Etihad Airways GAA World Games is a chance to bring these clubs together to celebrate their passion for the games. http://www.gaa.ie/worldgames/about

GAA World Games 2016, Dublin 7th-14th August

For this year’s games, more than 1,700 Gaelic footballers, hurlers, and camogie players from 10 different regions around the world are bringing Gaelic games home to Ireland. 87 teams from 20 countries will travel to Dublin for the week –long festival of Gaelic Games, with the finals taking place in Croke Park.

Teams from as far away as Australia, South Africa and Argentina will be represented, in addition to teams from China, Canada, the Middle East, the US, Europe and Britain. A Grand opening Ceremony will take place at Croke Park before the All Ireland Senior Hurling Semi-Final on August 7th. More than 500 games will be played over the course of the weeklong festival.

The scale of the 2016 Etihad Airways GAA World Games represents a tripling in size of the inaugural GAA World Games hosted by Etihad Airways, in Abu Dhabi last summer. A main feature of the 2016 World Games event will be the growing number of new GAA clubs made up of non-native Irish people who have discovered Gaelic games and have made it the sport of their choice. http://www.gaa.ie/news/gaelic-games-are-coming-home-2016/

CCM Sponsor Image

CCM Recruitment is a proud sponsor of Abu Dhabi Na Fianna GAA Team, who are taking part in the GAA World Games 2016. It is one of the fastest growing clubs in the Middle East region. Na Fianna caters for Men’s and Ladies’ football but in recent years it has sent up Na Fianna Óige, a youth team which has grown from strength to strength. With the introduction of the Middle East Hurling League in 2014/2015, this saw the reintroduction of Hurling into the club and the club managed to field 2 teams in its inaugural year. Last year also saw the start of camogie training and as well as taking part in games during tournaments, the club also hosted the neighbouring Dubai Celts in a very successful blitz last year. http://www.adnafianna.com/#!our-club/c1z79

Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi Are Attending The Critical Care Conference In Perth

Critical Care Auckland Conference Australia Image

Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi is now hiring


Intensive Care Nurses


Perth and Sydney interviews 20th-22nd of October


Register now for your place


Come and meet the team

Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi (CCAD) representatives will be attending the ANZICS ACCCN Annual Scientific Meeting at Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre. Concurrent to the conference, CCAD will be holding interviews on the 20th – 22nd of October in Perth. Further face to face interview opportunities are also available in Sydney. Come and meet the team during their visit.

Skype interviews can be arranged for nurses located in Australia and New Zealand unable to attend in person.


The Hospital

CCAD, part of Mubadala’s network of world-class healthcare facilities, is a multispecialty hospital on Al Maryah Island in Abu Dhabi, UAE. CCAD is a unique and unparalleled extension of US-based Cleveland Clinic’s model of care, specifically designed to address a range of complex and critical care requirements unique to the Abu Dhabi population.

The intensive care unit is an exciting and challenging environment at CCAD, offering world class innovative experiences and opportunities for nurses. You will be challenged with high acuity critical patients, work with a world class team and receive support to provide patient centered care.While patients are complex, CCAD will support your professional growth and offer mentorship.

Submit Your CV 


Benefits of CCAD employment

In addition to being part of an international clinical team, successful applicants will receive accommodation, a transportation allowance, health insurance, monthly travel allowances and a generous annual leave package. Living in Abu Dhabi also provides great opportunities to experience a unique culture and travel.


Contact CCM Recruitment International

CCM Recruitment International offers personalised application assistance and guidance for all candidates wishing to apply. For more details or to register for interviews today contact the team via email or phone

Dawn dawn@ccmrecuitment.com.au

Sarah sarah@ccmrecruitment.com.au

AUS Free Call 1800 818 844 or NZ Free Call 0800 700 839

We look forward to hearing from you soon

Please note that our clients will only allocate us visas for applicants from Europe, Australia, New Zealand, the USA and Canada. Work visas are issued on the basis of our Recruitment Agency locations.

If you do not hold a passport from one of these regions we regret that cannot process your application.



Nursing Jobs Dublin, Ireland

Nursing in Dublin


Staff Nurses & Nurse Managers Opportunities



Cath Lab



Dual Qualified – Paeds

Day Therapy/Endoscopy

CNM2 – Urgent Cardiac Care Unit

Clinical Nurse Specialist – Cardiology

HSE Salary Scale in-line with years of experience while benefits include:

  • €2000 relocation fee
  • Nursing Registration fees paid for by the hospital
  • Pension scheme
  • Critical illness cover
  • VHI and Laya discount scheme
  • Discounted inpatient and outpatient treatment rates
  • Sick leave scheme
  • Flexible working hours
  • Financial support for career training & development
  • Staff Care Services programme
  • Career break scheme
  • Discount pharmacy rates
  • Subsidised restaurant
  • Credit union scheme
  • Sports and Social Club

Experience and requirements:

  • Nursing Diploma or Degree
  • Eligible for registration with NMBI( Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland)
  • Minimum of 1.5 years’ experience in acute hospital

Applications from nurses with 2-4 years’ experience gained from JCI Accredited hospitals will also be considered.

To apply contact conor.fitzgerald@ccmrecruitment.com           Tel 01 8366092 or UK Freephone 0800279614

Happy St. Patrick’s Day

St.Patricks day Greeting

May the wind always be at your back.

May the sun shine warm upon your face,

and rains fall soft upon your fields.

And until we meet again,

May God hold you in the palm of His hand


St Patrick the patron saint of Ireland, the subject of legends; famous for driving the snakes out of Ireland, which is thought to be symbolic of the ending of pagan worship in Ireland.

Saint Patrick’s Day is associated with everything Irish: anything green, white and gold, from shamrocks to pots of gold. For those who celebrate its intended religious meaning, St. Patrick’s Day is traditionally a spiritual day, a day of renewal. Since the holiday began in Ireland and as the Irish spread out around the world, they took with them their history, their culture, and celebrations. The biggest observance of all is, of course, in Ireland. With the exception of restaurants and pubs, almost all businesses close on March 17th. All over the world big cities and small towns alike celebrate with parades, “wearing of the green,” music and songs, Irish food and drink, and activities for kids such as crafts, colouring and games. Some communities even go so far as to dye rivers or streams green!

People throughout Ireland from the banks of the Liffey to the Hills of Donegal, to the distant shores or the faraway lands where many have gone to find their fortune both past and present, hold parades and festivals that celebrate the Irish culture. Local musicians perform during the parades, from street corners to barstools. St. Patrick’s Day festivals illustrate an atmosphere of the famous Irish welcome and warmth; bringing a little piece of the Motherland to the millions of Irish emigrants and diaspora who find themselves thinking of home.

They say everyone who appreciates Ireland and the Irish becomes an Honorary Irishman on 17th March with this in mind, the Staff and Management of CCM Recruitment International (a 100% Irish company) are taking this opportunity to wish you, Very Happy Patricks Day as you to join with us in celebrating our National Holiday.

Happy International Women’s Day

International Women's day

International Women’s Day held on March 8th is a day globally celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. International Women’s Day originally called International Working Women’s Day; has been celebrated since the early 1900, a period of great change in the industrialised world with booming population growth and increase in radical ideologies. The earliest known observance of Women’s day was in 1908 in New York where 15,000 marched through the streets demanding shorter hours, better pay and voting rights. In 1910 in Copenhagen at a conference of more than 100 women from 17 countries proposed that every year in every country there should be a celebration on the same day, an International Women’s day. Following the unanimous agreement , in 1911 International Women’s Day was honoured in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland for the first time. (http://www.internationalwomensday.com/About)

In 1975, International Women’s Day was celebrated by the United Nations for the first time. In December of 1977, the General Assembly invited member nations to proclaim March 8th as the United Nations as the UN Day for Women’s Rights and world peace.  (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Women%27s_Day)

In 1996, the UN started the practice of an annual them centred in and around Women. In early, 2000 and the years following International Women’s Day fell out of favour and stalled in many countries, it was revived in 2011 and has continued to gain recognition and grow again in strength. (http://www.internationalwomensday.com/About)


Did You Know?

  1. On March 8th 1914, Sylvia Pankhurst was arrested in front of Charing Cross Station as she made her way to speak in Trafalgar Square, to those who took part in a march in support of Women’s Suffrage.
  2. In 1917, women in Russia began a strike for “bread and peace” in reaction to the deaths of over 2 million Russian soldiers who died in WWI, opposed by political leaders, the women continued to strike for four days until the Czar was forced to abdicate and the provisional government granted the women to right to vote. The strike commenced on 23rd February in the Julian Calendar which was in use in Russia at the time, but fell on the 8th March in the Gregorian Calendar.
  3. In 2001, the global internationalwomensday.com was launched in effort to reenergise interest in the day as a celebration of the successful achievements of women.


What The Leap? Why Exactly Do We Have A Leap Year?

Leap year

It takes 365 days for the earth to orbit the sun, which makes up a year, right? Nope, sorry, it takes 365.2422 days for a complete orbit of the earth around the sun but the Gregorian calendars only count 365 days. It was Julius Caesar’s astronomer Sosigenes who came up with the 365-day year with an extra day every four years to accommodate the extra hours not counted and it’s from this the Gregorian Calendar evolved. (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/12177017/Leap-Year-2016-Why-does-February-have-29-days-every-four-years.html

clock-884600_1280To correct the difference between the solar system and the Gregorian calendar February gets an extra day every four years. This ensures that our clocks and the seasons are in harmony with the earth.(http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/12177017/Leap-Year-2016-Why-does-February-have-29-days-every-four-years.html) If we didn’t make the correction, eventually our seasons would be out of whack and jumping around the calendar, in fact in 750 years’ time June would be found in the middle of winter.(http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/google-doodleleap-day-2016-what-is-a-leap-year-and-why-do-we-have-them-a6897486.html)

So once every four years there’s an extra day, simple. Right? No, it’s slightly more complicated, technically a leap year isn’t every four years, for example the year 2000 was a leap year but 1700, 1800 and 1900 were not. Normally there is a leap year for every year that you can divide by four, but if that year can be divided by 100 but not exactly by 400 than it’s not. This is because adding an extra day to the calendar every four years, actually over corrects the difference since the earth year is not exactly 365.25 days long, so every 400 years, three leap years are removed. This solution was thought up by Pope Gregory XIII’s astronomers when they introduced the Gregorian Calendar in 1582. (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/12177017/Leap-Year-2016-Why-does-February-have-29-days-every-four-years.html)

Okay, that explains why we have a leap year but why is it in February?

 This goes back to the Romans and their calendars. All other months in the Julian calendar have 30 or 31 days except February. Under Julius Caesar, February had 30 days and July the month named after him had 31, August had only 29 days. This didn’t suit his successor Caesar Augustus, who because of pride wanted his month to have the same number of days as Julius Caesar’s, so he took two days from February and added them to August so it would have 31 days as well because of this the extra day in the calendar every four years is added to February. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/12177017/Leap-Year-2016-Why-does-February-have-29-days-every-four-years.html)

Did you know?

  1. The chances of having a birthday on a leap day are extremely slim. The odds are on 1 in 1,461!
  2. People who are born on Feb 29th are often referred to as “leaplings” or “leapers”. There is only roughly 4.1 million people around the world who have been born on the 29th.
  3. There is a Leap Year Capital- the town of Anthony in the US holds a Leap Year Festival every four years and is the self-proclaimed Leap year Capital http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/12177017/Leap-Year-2016-Why-does-February-have-29-days-every-four-years.html)
  4. Women can propose to men in leap year- one theory for this is St. Bridget complained to St. Patrick that women had to wait too long for their suitors to propose, so St Patrick then supposedly gave women the chance to ask every four years.( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leap_year )


Bon Secours Hospitals Interview Workshop Melbourne May 2016

Bon Secours



A representative from Bon Secours Hospital is coming to Australia to interview RN’s interested to work in Ireland – BOOK TODAY!

Bon Secours is the largest independent hospital group in Ireland with over 2,500 staff including 350 leading consultants. We treat more than 200,000 patients annually. Bon Secours has four technologically advanced hospitals located in Cork, Dublin, Galway and Tralee together with a Consultation Centre in Limerick and a Care Village in Cork.

Dublin is one of world’s top cities with a vibrant mix of culture, history, great people and a thriving economy.  Full of charm and hospitality, the city is complimented with a multi-cultural population and is one of the fastest growing economies in Europe.  Dublin is the city of choice for business, career, work and pleasure.  Qualified and registered Nurses are in demand…




Medical / Surgical




  • €2000 relocation package, paid over a year
  • Reimbursement Of Flights At Start Of Contract
  • Paid NMBI / Nursing Registration
  • Paid accommodation during adaption, if required
  • Paid Work permits, if required
  • HSE Salary Scale in-line with years of experience
  • 24-27 Days’ vacation + Public Holidays




  • Nursing Diploma or Degree
  • Eligible for registration with NMBI (Nursing & Midwifery Board of Ireland)
  • Minimum of 1.5 years’ experience
  • Applications from nurses with experience from JCI Accredited hospitals will also be considered.


Contact: Dawn: dawn@ccmrecruitment.com.au or Raquel: raquel@ccmrecruitment.com.au

Free Phone AUS: 1800 818 844 Free Phone NZ: 0800 700 839 or +61 2 9328 1218


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