Photo: Participants to the Training Workshop receive their certificates
Project: Onyose (Language: Herero. Meaning: Star)
Epilepsy Namibia was founded in 2007 and registered with the Dept. of Health and Welfare, Namibia on 21st June 2007. The association became a Full Member of the IBE in July 2007.
The media in Namibia supports the organization very well and reaction to press releases and news articles have been positive. We have set up 5 support groups in different communities and a social worker and fundraiser have volunteered their services. The Dept of Mental Health, with sponsorship of the World Health Organization, is planning an awareness campaign with Epilepsy Namibia in 2008.
The Onyose Project is the result of an enquiry from the mother of a child with epilepsy and is consequently planned with the support of the care centre he attends. A four-day workshop is planned to train the teachers, care givers and people with epilepsy at theTrust to enable them to manage the condition effectively. We are planning to present and package the information and care plans in such away that it becomes a reference work for the future, because it has come to our attention that there are a number of groups through Namibia that need similar training and lack access to information and communication.
Funding is still very low and there is no official payroll for the organization. All services are volunteered and training of future staff is undertaken when the opportunity arises. Onyose Trust has offered support for a venue and facilities for the workshop while Epilepsy Namibia will provide trainers and training materials. A well known person with epilepsy from the surrounding community will also attend the workshop as she is a good example of how to live successfully with epilepsy.
Problem to be addressed
The lack of knowledge of, and training in, the management of epilepsy at Onyose Trust that is to be addressed in this project is serious and, unfortunately, not unique. Onyose is an example of brave people making do with what they have to help as much as they can and therefore forms the pilot project. This group of 30 people will benefit from a structured care plan tailored to the specific needs of the people with epilepsy in their care. As this is a day care centre only, the program needs to be extended to the family and home care givers as they are the continuum of a holistic treatment and management approach.
The challenge for the success of the program lies in compliance to the management plan.
Objectives for the Program
To enable 30 people (staff members, parents, caregivers and people with epilepsy) at the Onyose Trust to establish a care program in order to manage the condition of epilepsy more effectively, in the course of a 4 day workshop during the Easter School Holiday in 2008 in Windhoek, Namibia.
Assessing the Effectiveness of the Program
The project has a monitoring program built into its structure:
- In the first two weeks after the workshop the trainer returns to Onyose Trust to monitor the initiation of new programs.
- Monthly follow-up visits during the first year will ensure regular support and monitoring of progress.
- The project forms part of Epilepsy Namibia services and has to be reported to the Committee and to the Department of Health and Social Services, Namibia in the associations Annual Report.
- The support group formed during the workshop by the parents, caregivers and people with epilepsy, will become part of the network of support groups of Epilepsy Namibia and thus monitored and included in services.
- Department Health and Social Services is expected to provide financial assistance to support the overall Epilepsy Plan.
- Department of Mental Health, Namibia is preparing a campaign for Epilepsy out of the Shadows for 2008.
- World Health Organization has sponsored printing of posters and pamphlets and sponsors the campaign of the Department of Health.
- ITCS (Information Technology Consulting Services) Windhoek supplies communication and master copies of electronic material, charging only reproduction costs