We are now at the end of week two of our visit and all the planned training is happening, after a bit of reorganization and re-structuring of the course. There are sessions for Chainama Hospital staff two mornings a week that are well attended by a mixed group of nurses, physiotherapists, clinical officers, doctors and two of the hospital security staff. The afternoon group for students from Chainama College of Health began this week when students returned after the water shortage ended (see last week’s blog). Both groups are led by a Zambian trainer with support from Joanna and Simon.
This is the first part of our project to bring on board local trainers with a view to making the project sustainable in the Zambian health system. Both trainees completed the initial ZTA training course in 2015 and began their training as trainers in January this year. They are now leading a course themselves with our support. We hope to have a third trainee beginning this phase of the training at the end of the year if we are able to deliver a course in Ndola. In addition 4 more trainees have begun the first part of their training, shadowing the courses led by Zambian trainers.
Both trainings are going well at this stage. We have had to make a lot of changes to the course for the college students to make it fit their programme. We have re-designed the course to fit into fourteen afternoon blocks of 2 hours each - and fitted around four public holidays. We will be able to finish the course within the time available, ending just in time for Zambian Independence Day on 24th October.
e have also got back in contact with the Mental Health Users Network of Zambia (MHUNZA). We are going to deliver two taster workshops for their members next week. Our aim is to find out if Therapeutic Art is useful to them and something they would want MHUNZA to consider taking forward as a project . MHUNZA would be able to do this on if it could attract funding and ZTA would be able to support them in getting it set up. There is now a body of people in Zambia who have completed one of our training courses and would be able to run sessions for MHUNZA members.
We have met with Mr Mayeya from the Ministry of Health who is responsible for mental health services in Zambia to keep up our contact with the ministry. At his behest, we may be able to meet with the ministry official responsible for professional training, to find out how ZTA training fits into the wider plans for training health staff in Zambia.
It has been a very busy but productive week: planning, redesigning the course, writing notes, designing forms and delivering the training sessions. The next week will be very full with five days of training sessions and preparing for Joanna to go to Livingstone to deliver the course there over 5 days.
Thankfully we have a calm place to return to each night at Gossner Mission, where we can work and re-charge ourselves! If you are ever in Lusaka, it’s highly recommended - by ZTA and Mosi the Gossner cat!