VIDEO LINK to the EAPA-SA President’s Interview
REPORT BY EAPA UGANDA BRANCH
- The Pan African EAPA conference which was the first of its kind was launched on the 18th of July, 2017 at Hotel Africana, Kampala – Uganda.
- The theme for the Conference was “EAPs Providing African Solutions”.
- Old Mutual South Africa Sponsored the Gala Dinner at the tune of SAR. 70,000.00
- EAPA SA sponsored the Conference with Conference Bags.
- EAPA Uganda Branch hosted the first EAPA Pan African Conference From the 18th -20th of July 2017 at Hotel African in Kampala, Uganda.
The event brought together over 20 human resource professionals, Social Workers, Counsellors, psychologists and Policy Makers from three African countries to explore the role of EAPs in promoting mental health, physical and psychological wellbeing at the workplace on the African continent.
The delegates were a representation of Psychologists in Private practice; Social Workers were represented by the President of the Association Mr. Charles Draecoba, the Human Resource Managers which included those working with the Parliament of Uganda, The Ministry of Public Service, and the Human resource consultants. The School of Psychology was represented by Professor of Organisational Psychology Prof Peter Baguma, Counselling Psychologist and human resource managers working with Banks including Bank of Uganda.
Strategies to create awareness on the utility of EAPs and how we can advocate for policies at the workplace that promote EAPs to ensure employees function optimally was to be discussed.
All the media were well represented to mention a few; the National Newspaper – the New Vision, the observer, Daily Monitor and the Red Pepper. The National Television Networks included; Uganda Broadcasting Corporation, National Broadcasting Corporation, National Television(NTV), Channel 44, Urban Television and The National Radios; Radio One, CBS.
- Presentation on EAPs – Kenya Experience, benefits, challenges and way forward – Ms. Selina Kemama – ICAS Kenya.
- EAP – Uganda Experience: Dr. Ruth Senyonyi – The Assistant Director Bank of Uganda and Heads the Welfare and Counselling Division under Human Resource Department.
- Experience of Ministry of Public Service – Florence Talemwa Muhwezi – Assistant Commissioner – Human Resource – Ministry of Public Service – Uganda
Human Resource Management and Wellness – presented by Florence Tayebwa Muhwezi who is the Assistant Commissioner for Human Resource Management in the Ministry of Public Service.
- Workplace Diversity (In the 21st Century Organisation) – presented by Prof. Peter Baguma, Professor of Psychology of Makerere University who also represented the School of Psychology – Makerere University Kampala.
- EAP Prospects in Africa: Estimates from Nigeria and Beyond- Presented by Dr David Igbokwe who is the member of Faculty, Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy: Covenant University-Nigeria.
- Employee Wellbeing- Old Mutual Insurance Uganda – Presented by Deborah Maitum responsible for HR & Admin Manager in Uganda.
- LEDET Internal Wellness Model- A case study for Limpopo Provincial Administration – presented by Mr Tinyiko Godfrey Chabalala who is the Manager for Wellness Programme with the Department of Economic Development.
- EAP For Africa Project- its origin and the future- presented by Mr Tinyiko Godfrey Chabalala who is the current President of EAPA-SA.
The EAPA Pan African Conference began with opening remarks by the President of EAPA Uganda Branch, Ms Margaret Diana L. Nalyaali, who welcomed the participants from Uganda, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa.
This was followed by presentations from various speakers from ICAS Kenya, Bank of Uganda, The Ministry of Public Service Uganda, The Uganda National Social Worker’s Union, The School of Psychology Makerere University, UAP – Old Mutual Uganda/SA, EAPA Nigeria, EAPA Kenya and EAPA South Africa. There were group discussions by the participants on experiences of EAPs with case studies from Uganda, Kenya, and Nigeria and South Africa. The conference was concluded with a set of discussions detailing the status of EAPA Uganda and the choice of the next two African countries to host the conferences. Nigeria was seconded to host the next Pan African Conference (2018) and Kenya to host 2019.
Welcome and opening statements
The conference began with opening remarks by the President of EAPA Uganda Branch, Ms Margaret Diana L. Nalyaali, who welcomed the participants from Uganda, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa. Opening the conference, the President of EAPA Uganda Branch and lead host, highlighted the experiences and need for EAP at workplace in the African context. She urged members to join future efforts in selling and lobbying the EAP to companies, organisations, public and private sectors so as to understand the value to employee’s health and their bottom-line. She found value in this Pan African conference with participants from 3 countries as the start of the journey to ensure employee wellbeing is recognised at the workplace.
She noted that the attendance was low yet communication had been made to most African countries which included; Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, Lesotho, Swaziland, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Zambia, Angola, Nigeria, Egypt, Ghana, Somalia, Ethiopia, DR Congo, Botswana, Malawi. Efforts were made to contact other African countries which are not mentioned here but unfortunately there was no contact person either on the websites, Facebook or by Google. This showed that we have a lot of work to do if we are to reach every African country as per the Pan-African spirit to make sure that mental health is present. Other sites that were used to check whether mental health existed in African countries were the Mental Health Profile of all African Countries on Google Search. Which meant that either these countries don’t have mental health providers at all or they exist but not known at all and cannot be accessed in any way which is a challenge if we are to realise our Goal of existence in all African Countries.
She noted that communications had been made with different Psychological Associations, Counselling Associations, Social Workers Associations and Human Resource Associations, Head of Faculties and Students in the related fields. She also noted that if all the members that had been contacted and promised to come had honoured the promise and committed, the attendance would have been overwhelming. Many gave up for lack of sponsorship while others sent in mails at the last hour that they were not able to attend. She argued all African countries to make effort to attend the next 2nd EAPA Pan African Conference.
This also happened in Uganda where many organisations were invited but most of them gave up at the last minute and yet some of the key lead people were to be speakers at the conference which disorganised the whole program. Among those who had been invited were the Ministries where EAPs fall and who also are the policy makers, representatives from the Police, Army and Head of Associations who are part of the stakeholders in providing EAP services. She also argued members and invited guest speakers to make it a point to honour their promise and if they cannot, at least to delegate a representative.
The President of EAPA Uganda branch spoke about the importance of EAPs in the African context citing Uganda for an example. Having marketed to over 200 companies and organisations in Uganda and also as a provider for a number of international EAP companies, there are not many that offer full EAP program at workplace except for now Bank of Uganda. Most of the organisations provide bits of the EAPs. The most common components of EAP are the individual counselling – face to face or telephonic, Couple counselling and many that are now taking on the wellness program geared towards physical exercises. She argued all stakeholders in providing EAPs in Africa, to mark this as the official start of the long-time goal we have to achieve in over a period of time. That is to make sure every country in Africa has the presence of mental health and is being regulated by EAPA Pan African Association.
EAP- Kenyan Experience
Ms Selina Kemama is a Kenyan based entrepreneur who runs a wellness centre as well as serve as an agent for ICAS International, a UK based company that offers EAP services in Kenya; primarily counselling and wellness programs. She shared with the delegates how things are done within her organisation. She talked about health checks to ensure proper functioning and also full body checks before people engage in gym exercises. The latter is done to ensure that one is eligible for the gym lest they get seriously injured. Another service she runs is a call centre counselling service where clients can call in at designated times and are attended to by counsellors. Additionally, clients can walk-in and be served by the counsellors. She stressed the importance of creating an Africa-wide network of professionals so as to be able to utilise local expertise that not only makes financial sense but also helps the local professionals grow the experience in EAP service provision.
Sharing EAP experience
During this session two groups were created for the sole purpose of sharing experiences about EAP. Each group was tasked to hear from a member of an organisation that had just started out with the EAP. Issues to be discussed were the overall experience, challenges and what was working thus far. Some of the challenges mentioned included; top management’s poor understanding of EAP and unwillingness to fund it, questions of return on investment on EAP, poor response to the EAP; Confidentiality and the fear of employees being spied on and lastly, beneficiaries don’t seem to value it.
Bank of Uganda EAP
Dr. Ruth Senyonyi started the Employee Assistance Programs in Bank of Uganda when she was employed in 1998. Dr. Senyonyi is a professional Counsellor and gave a brief of some of the activities under her division as a case study of work based support programs for employees in Uganda.
The program provides support for employees and she outlined the duties of the division as follows:
- Ensure psychological, emotional and physical wellbeing of staff by provision of physical health programs and sports clubs which are headed by staff members to improve both the social skills and physical wellbeing.
- She mentioned the Improvement of staff wellness and staff satisfaction and this is done by offering professional counselling to the employees when personal or social conflicts/problems are interfering with work performance.
Counselling Services are in 3 categories:
- Employee Assistance Programs – Staff experience conflicts or problems that lead to poor work performance, absenteeism, accidents or conflicts with supervisors which could lead to job loss if not corrected. This is for employees and their families. It also includes behavioural change management which is done by referrals and self- appointments which are on-site activity.
- The types of problems handled in counselling include – job stress, balancing work and family, self esteem issues, marital and family problems, financial and legal problems, alcohol/drugs, grief and trauma caused by loss or death of loved ones, rape and sexual harassment, HIV/AIDS and cancer, religious based problem and relationships both personal and work related.
- In addition, there Exit Interviews which are carried out for all staff that leave Bank employment.
She also mentioned Employee Preventive Programs which provide mental health activities to improve the overall mental health of employees and their families
- Career Counselling: This program helps staff make career choices within the workplace to encourage career advancement and job satisfaction, identify and broaden skills , learn new competences and skills in the work in addition to helping employees with transition that causes distress when the staff faces change, such as promotions, demotions, retirement, etc.
- Staff Disciplinary Matters – Advisory role on the Management Disciplinary Committee.
- HR Policies: the division is mandated to ensure that the policies for staff wellness are formulated, approved and implemented as needed. These include the sexual harassment policy, breastfeeding and childcare policy, funeral policy and many others.
Lastly, she elaborated the Benefits of workplace counselling which included facility that is confidential, easily accessible with a qualified professional counsellor, reduces sickness absences, gaining new skills in dealing with different situations in their lives, reduces stress, job satisfaction, and improves moral and personal wellbeing and many others.
Human Resource Management and Wellness: Experience of Ministry of Public Service – Uganda.
Mrs Florence Talemwa Muhwezi, the Assistant Commissioner Human Resource Management, Ministry of Public Service took us through Session 5: Human Resource Management and Wellness: Experience of Ministry of Public Service.
This session commenced with a presentation from the Assistant Commissioner Human Resource – Ministry of Public Service. She started out by informing members present that she setup the EAP for the Ministry from scratch and has the dream of turning it fully and being adopted by other Ministries. A look at Government bureaus currently running wellness programmes revealed that the Parliament has a gym and baby centre, the Uganda Communications Commission has a gym, and the Ministry of Public Service has swimming, aerobics and jogging.
The EAP started on the 13th of July 2016 with a request to staff to register and 121 were received. It constitutes scheduled activities; Tuesdays and Thursdays have counselling and guidance, Wednesdays swimming, Fridays walking and jogging and football on Saturdays. There are plans to incorporate more sporting activities as the year goes on.
There has been some success with this EAP. There are 12 intervention programs which include; healthy office snack and refreshments, wellness newsletters, ergonomics, health camps, prohibition of smoking zones. In addition, staffs have resting areas, physical ﬁtness programs, emotional values and spiritual wellness, tracking of illness in departments, personal improvement training and retirement. The program has registered baby-friendly corners with at least 58% utilisation, and work leave having a response of 60%. Aerobics attracts 20-45persons whilst swimming which happens once a month attracts 20 persons. There has been a free eye care clinic, quarterly staff meetings with motivational speakers on wellness and ﬁnancial literacy and a visit by officers to Cheshire Home housing children with disability.
The program has encountered challenges. Some of those mentioned were staffs voluntarily dropping out of some of the programs, budgetary allocations, getting appropriate time slots, demand for snacks by employees and a request by the Minister to present medical evidence for those that do not participate in the activities. These sessions ended with the presenter sharing testimonials of staff that found the intervention useful.
EAPs: Return of Investment-Gains from the Social Welfare Sector
This session was presented by Mr. Draecebo, the President of the National Association of Social workers Uganda. He commenced by explaining what NASWU is, and also gave a proﬁle of the association and the objectives of the association. Social work was explained as a profession built on a code of ethics with the goal of maintaining wellbeing, maximising the development of human potential and the fulfilment of human needs. He went on to justify the investing in social welfare workforce citing the professional and skill workforce that result into quality services, the opportunities to continually develop staff, the various areas as in child care, rehabilitation, palliative care, geriatrics. He further mentioned medical social work that could potentially beneﬁt from competencies of social workers and that social work as a discipline is relevant to all the sectors regarding work to mention but a few.
In the last segment of his presentation, he identiﬁed what to consider when formulating policy and making policy reforms with respect to the EAP. Some of the highlights;
- That policy formulation and reform should be in line with sustainable development goal of human capital.
- It should look at the inadequate skills for development.
- The death of relevant quality and quantity of workers.
- Competition for the limited resources.
He informed us that Uganda has the largest population of young people in the world and that this is a resource that could be at potential risk if not harnessed and lastly that there should be a regulatory framework for the EAP.
Workplace Diversity in the 21st Century Organisation
Professor Peter Baguma from the School of Psychology Makerere University was the presenter for this session. He under scored the importance of diversity at the workplace. In order for an organisation to function optimally, there needs to be a mix of people with representation by ethnicity, religion, gender, nationality, bringing their competence to ensure that organisational goals are attained. An organisation that bases recruitment from only one category is doomed to fail because they miss out on what diversity has to offer.
There are instruments to ensure diversity at the workplace to cater for people with disability, fair representation of women to mention but a few. These can help organisations come up with policies that ensure a diverse human resource at the workplace. A diverse place is not without its challenges; costs of training could shoot up and likewise conﬂicts could arise amongst staff and it might be difficult to make changes that would be all inclusive for a diverse workforce.
Finally, managing diversity could be done through; ensuring that the entire process from hiring to promotion is based on an employee’s competence and performance, taking serious any complaints about discrimination, unfair treatment and training employees. Organisations should ensure clarity of the merits of diversity to employees and the value of diversity in work teams. The message to employees that they are an equal opportunity employer and embrace diversity is very vital. The presenter concluded by stating that diversity is the key to successful organisations today in the 21st century.
EAP Prospects in Africa: Estimates from Nigeria and beyond service delivery
This session was opened by Dr. David Igbokwe, an academician and the Secretary, EAPA Nigeria. He started out by asking if EAP was an option in Africa, whether we had a veritable platform for EAP practice in Africa and if we had the skills to practice EAP while holding on to our day job. To all these questions, there was a loud “Yes” from the attendees and the presenter did agree. He then used vignettes to highlight the psychological problems at the workplace that seem to be poorly understood by HR professionals. Drawing parallels to physical wellbeing, he made the case that psychological problems are very hard to detect and in most cases, people manifesting with them might be looked at as lazy, most likely finding themselves losing their jobs. From these vignettes is a lesson, that fatal outcomes can result for employees facing psychological challenges. EAP can effectively address these problems that inevitably manifest at the workplace.
He also presented the proﬁle of Nigeria detailing who the people are and some national statistics covering ethnicity, age, life expectantly, and literacy. He looked at what Nigerians do and broke down for the attendees the personality of the Nigerian which is the traditional type, the westernised type and the intermediate, mixed or transitional type. It was apparent that the different categories have implications for EAP practice in terms of physical and mental health remedy seeking behaviour.
The presentation then moved to a brief on how EAP was introduced in Nigeria. He ﬁrst spoke about how he got into EAP and mentioned some of the EAP practitioners in Nigeria. Additionally, a breakdown of EAP service usage was presented. Challenges to the EAP were majorly three, ﬁrst of which is the Government which views EAP as some sort of labour union – Nigeria has continual battles with labour unions. Further to that there does not seem to be a consistent development plan by the government which simplifies EAP growth. Second are employers who look at cost cutting, are supported by regulatory authorities and generally do not seem to value EAP for their employees. An instance in support of this is workers who leave their jobs without getting exit counselling.
Lastly is stigmatisation. Many of the issues that can be addressed by EAP are construed to be mental illness caused by supernatural and evil forces. People are unwilling to open up at the workplace because of the impact it might have on them. Another challenge at the workplace is the refusal of interventions for those that have been identiﬁed to have adjustment issues.
The Nigerian EAPs development is slowed by some factors namely; extra cost to employers, paucity of EAP providers, clampdown of union’s conflict between HR roles and EAP work, the bias for physical health to the expense of other aspects of wellbeing and the training and retraining of EAP practitioners. He emphasised that these challenges are very likely to appear with the EAP in Uganda and elsewhere in African countries. He wound up this segment with a display of statistics, a progressive increase in the number of people employed in Nigeria as evidence for the prospects of EAP in Nigeria.
He then made a case for the need for EAPs in Africa by mentioning some of the problems that need to be addressed by the EAP. Additionally, he challenged participants on whether they recognise that times are changing and if necessary adjustments have been made. Further, he asked about certain issues that are present at workplace and how many of these issues are promptly addressed professionally and who is expected to address those issues. Using an illustration, he showcased Nigeria and South Africa showing numbers of EAP service providers, estimates of organisations yet to use EAP services, each country’s EAP acceptance rate and an EAP practitioner’s motivation to engage in EAP service delivery. From this argument it was clear that the potential for EAP on the continent is huge.
There is huge potential for EAP in Africa and immediate action must be taken to make the best of the opportunities it presents. For this to happen, there is need to get the government to buy the idea, document the process, create awareness and attract policy makers and liaise with organisations that are stable in EAP provision to mention a few strategies.
Employee Wellbeing – UAP-Old Mutual Uganda
This session had a presentation by Mrs. Deborah Maitum, the HR and Administration Manager UAP-Old Mutual Uganda a sister company to Old Mutual South Africa. She began the presentation with an overview of which UAP-Old Mutual Insurance is, the history and product Mix.
The presenter defined health and wellness and then went in to the key aspects of health and wellness. Here she looked at workplace health promotion where focus is on fostering healthy workplace policies and supportive environments, enhancing positive social conditions, building personal skills and organisational resilience, and promoting healthy lifestyles. The second aspect is emotional wellbeing which she said needs to be addressed to inspire healthy behaviour change. The last key aspect mentioned is being involved where you engage staff to establish how they feel, and to help them understand why they feel that way and to suggest ways to cope. She shared an experience of her workplace where she talked about the recognition of the millennial workforce and acknowledging that they are different. Working with them to take advantage of their strengths and engaging them to contribute to the wellness programme.
Using an illustration, she highlighted them as causes of stress and how it turns out that workload and personal issues top the list. Suggesting ways of enhancing wellness and lifestyle at work include creating healthy office environment, periodic health talks, scheduled fun group physical exercise, have a wellness month with talks on pertinent health issues and creating space for staff to suggest and share ideas on wellness.
She concluded by presenting merits of wellness and healthy lifestyles in the workplace to both the employee and the employer and compared the healthy and unhealthy employee. She also delineated key success factors which included; management commitment, having a workplace health and wellbeing policy, deliberate efforts to keep everyone informed and enthused about health and wellbeing.
Employee and Wellness: Evidence Health Based Service Delivery model
Mr. Tinyiko Chabalala presented during this session. He started his discussion with a look at the legislation that supports wellness programs in South Africa. This speaks to the protection of people’s rights to access wellness programs at the workplace. These legislations spanned from South African constitution to the Public Service act, Public Service Regulation Act and Occupational Health and Safety Act all requiring employers to create safe and healthy environments for employees.
The wellness policy framework includes; workplace HIV/AIDS, EAP, Safety Health, Environment Risk and Quality Management (SHERQ), Health and Productivity Management. They consider a holistic approach to wellness that looks at psychological, physical, intellectual, occupational, spiritual and emotional aspects of staffs’ wellbeing. Physical wellness is scheduled from Monday through Friday where employees can do different physical activities at the employee ﬁtness centre. There has been incremental utilisation of this centre over the years. There is swimming also to complement the physical wellness. Organisational wellness serves to help executives identify potential areas that are bound to affect employee in achieving organisational goals. Quality of work life ensures that employees have a balance between work and life. This program provides for child care in addition to leave. Workplace HIV/AIDS aims to stem the spread of HIV/AIDS and to support employees that are positive. The SHERQ program ensures workplace safety and promotion of occupational hygiene whilst productivity management ensures management of chronic diseases and providing support to affected employees.
This session was concluded by suggesting that wellness programmes should be proactive in assisting staff in the areas of ﬁnancial management, stress management, life skills, substance abuse, promoting healthy lifestyles, managing workplace HIV and through the promotion of social clubs to help staff balance work and life.
EAP for Africa Business Meeting:
- The third day of the Conference 20thJuly was formally concluded by the official business meeting with the purpose of learning from various representatives of African countries, in the main South Africa, Nigeria Uganda and Kenya were in attendance to share lessons.
- Kenya delivered message of support to the Ugandan Team for taking such a great initiative to host the PAN African EAP Conference – message was delivered by one of the Kenya Executive member Mr Elijah Nyaribo on behalf of the EAPA President – Ms Cecilia Rachier who could not attend in person. Kenya still expresses sincere appreciation to EAPA-SA for its role in assisting to set-up structure and share knowledge on EAP.
- EAPA-SA Facilitated and shared information during discussion- information was shared about EAP for Africa Project and its origin (CHEVRON), the history of EAPA and EAPA-SA, Standards, ethics, Core technologies, requirements and criteria of becoming a full Branch, and benefits of being a member EAPA-Branch.
- Nigeria also delivered message of support to the Team by reflecting on the experiences of Nigeria as well as the role played by EAPA-SA in supporting the launch of EAPA-Nigeria, in particular Radhi and Hannes for their presence.
- Currently EAPA Uganda has six (6) members of the executive fully registered with the different boards and authorized to run the activities and manage the Association. Namely: (Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson, Secretary, Treasury and two members).
- Key points to note:
- EAPA Uganda is fully and legally registered in Uganda as a legitimate Branch of Professionals.
- Legal compliance with country specific legislations and acts (Certificate of Incorporation), Resolution, By-laws, Petition, Memorandum and articles of Association as according to the Uganda Constitution and NGO Board.
- Just a few steps away to be fully registered at the EAPA International Association.
- Completion of questionnaire – EAPA-SA Annual Conference evaluation format was shared for customisation use to evaluate the conference; the committee emailed the questionnaire to all participants where we are now waiting for feedback.
- The session was officially closed at around 16:00 and the Gala-dinner was announced to follow at 18:00
This session was presided over by Prof. Peter Baguma. Issues discussed were the way forward in terms of who hosts the next two events. During this session, he queried the status of the EAPA Pan African Association and EAPA Uganda Branch, structure and if membership fees were set. One of the committee members caught him up to the progress made thus far. The President of EAPA Uganda Branch also addressed this issue and she gave the conference a status report in as far as registration of the Uganda chapter was concerned. She made clarification that EAPA Uganda Branch is fully registered as a legal entity in Uganda awaiting finalization with EAPA International. She mentioned that time caught up with them otherwise they would be cleared by EAPA International before the hosting of Pan African Conference. She committed on behalf of the executive that it will be done as soon as possible. There was input from the South Africa EAPA President that threw more light on how chapters are formed and what the requirements were. Professor Baguma then told the conference that the leadership structure should be clear to avoid conﬂict.
The next issue that was discussed was who hosts the next conference and the members decided that it will be Nigeria followed by Kenya. Dr Igbokwe also advised the Uganda committee on membership. He suggested that the chapter should think of means to attract and keep members and one of the ways this should be done is to allow members to pay in instalments in order to complete payments. Additionally, he tasked the treasurer to come up with means of raising funds. On the issue of visibility and making immediate impact, he suggested that Uganda should proactively create awareness by using opportunities like, getting slots at major events organised by HRs and other pertinent functions. In conclusion, he ﬂoated the idea of using people skilled in marketing to sell the EAP.
Professor Baguma, in his capacity as conference chairperson, conveyed his gratitude to all participants and particularly presenters. He extended his word of thanks to the EAPA Uganda Executive committee, for their efforts to organise the conference, and expressed his satisfaction with the interactive nature of the discussions. He reminded the participants of the importance of what was achieved and he hoped the communication with African chapter partners would continue going forward.
The evening Gala-dinner was overwhelmingly attended by more than Fifty (50) people, academics, Counsellors, private counselling psychologists, HR practitioners, HR Consultants, social workers, Head of NGOs, Affiliates and Associates UAP – Old Mutual Uganda Insurance.
- The main purpose of the Gala-dinner was to issue certificates of attendance and create platform for networking.
- The EAPA Uganda President and the lead Host for EAPA Pan African Conference welcomed all the delegates and the special guest for the evening. She briefly narrated of the inception of EAPs in Uganda citing of how she started it over 17 years ago. So far over 200 companies and organisations in Uganda have been marketed to, offered presentations as a marketing strategy to sell the programs at workplace. At present most companies in Uganda ask for EAPs at workplace services from when they used to ask for counselling services. In addition, Student Assistance Programs in schools have also been embarked on and over 100 schools have benefitted through these programs. She was very grateful to God that she has witnessed the inauguration of the 1st EAPA Pan African Conference in Uganda as the host and founder of EAPs in Uganda. Special gratitude was extended to Old Mutual South Africa for the generous sponsorship of SA R 70,000.00 for the Gala Dinner. Special thanks to Madam Rakubu Tebogo of Old Mutual South Africa and Ms Mpho Nhlabathi for travelling all the way to come and brace the occasion. Special Thanks went to Dr. Marion Bocherds, Mr. Tshifiwa Mamaila for their tireless effort to make the conference a reality and the sponsor of conference bags extended to EAPA Pan Africa Conference. Dr. David Igbokwe from Nigeria and last but not least to the EAPA SA President for being there in person and for the gift he carried all the way from South Africa.
- The EAPA President thanked her executive for the tireless effort taken and time sacrificed to prepare and also to host the EAPA Pan African Conference.
- She mentioned that this is the beginning of the bigger project that has just been inaugurated in Kampala Uganda.
- The Guest of Honour who represented the Ministry of Public Service, Mrs Florence Talemwa Muhwezi expressed gratitude towards the idea of introducing EAPs in Africa and more so in Uganda and promised to spearhead with the policy makers and the mobilizing of Head of Human Resource Managers in all Government Institutions and Parastatals to join the movement for a better mental health working environment in Uganda.
- She thanked the organisers and all the attendees especially from South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria for sacrificing to come and witness the inauguration of the 1st EAPA Pan African Conference.
- Prof Peter Baguma who is the member of faculty, Psychology Makerere University delivered a key message of encouragement and motivation to the Ugandan Team to continue working hard in ensuring that this project is sustained. He further went on to send a message of appreciation to other African countries in particular South Africa for its support.
- Deborah Maitum from Old Mutual also cemented on the ongoing relationship and partnership with EAPs in Uganda.
- EAPA-SA also shared the vision of PAN African EAP Project and encourages professionals in Uganda to work harder to finalise with registering the Branch with EAPA International and also carry forward the project. The PAN African EAPA project is expected to rotate with African countries in order to promote sharing of best practices and knowledge exchange within the field of EAP.
This Report was prepared by EAPA Uganda Executive:
- The Secretary – Mr. Simon Arthur Ndaula (Lead Compiler of Conference Report)
- President of EAPA Uganda – Ms Margaret D. L. Nalyaali
- Vice President – Mrs. Ruth Matoya
- Treasurer – Mr. Mwanji Cliveland
- Member – Mrs. Lois Ocheng
- Member -Dr. Ruth Senyonyi
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