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Personal/Community Care after the Loss Due to Fire

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Friends, everyone of us was thrown into shock, disbelief, pain, sadness and other feelings. Whereas we were all affected in some way the top university administrators and occupants of the offices on the Main Building lost more than the rest of us. They lost valuables, information, space to work from and any other losses that may not be remembered now but will be recalled when needed in future.

Amidst all this we thank God that no one was physically harmed. However, this doesn’t mean people may not be affected emotionally/psychologically. I wish to share a few tips that we can use as first aid to ensure psychological health.

  • Use appropriate physical exercises alternated with relaxation. These will alleviate some of the physical reactions.
  • Structure your time – keep busy.
  • You’re normal and having normal reactions – don’t label yourself crazy.
  • Talk to people – talk is the most healing medicine.
  • Be aware of numbing the pain with overuse of drugs or alcohol. You don’t need to complicate this with a substance abuse problem.
  • Reach out – people do care.
  • Maintain as normal a schedule as possible.
  • Spend time with others and talk about what happened to you.
  • Help others who were affected as much as possible by sharing feelings and checking on how they are doing.
  • Give yourself permission to feel bad and share your feelings with others.
  • Keep a journal. Write down your thoughts and feelings about the incident. Research has shown that this is very effective for symptom reduction and resolution of the trauma.
  • Do things that feel good to you.
  • Realise those around you are under stress.
  • Don’t make any big life changes.
  • Do make as many daily decisions as possible which will give you a feeling of control over your life, i.e., if someone asks you what you want to eat, answer them even if you’re not sure.
  • Get plenty of rest.
  • Reoccurring thoughts, dreams or flashbacks are normal – don’t try to fight them – they’ll decrease over time and become less painful.
  • Eat well-balanced and regular meals (even if you don’t feel like it).

Some of us have family and friends who are more affected. What will be your role?

For Family and Friends

  • Listen carefully
  • Spend time with the traumatised person
  • Offer your assistance and a listening ear if they have not asked for help
  • Reassure them that they are safe
  • Help them with everyday tasks like cleaning, cooking, caring for the family, minding children.
  • Give them some private time.
  • Don’t take their anger or other feelings personally.
  • Don’t tell them that they are “lucky it wasn’t worse” – traumatized people are not consoled by those statements. Instead, tell them that you are sorry such an event has occurred and you want to understand and assist them.

NOTE:   Feel free to seek psychosocial support services from the university Counselling and Guidance Centre by walking in, calling to schedule an appointment or using virtual means. We are glad to announce that our professional colleagues from University of California Berkeley have offered to provide staff with free psychosocial support services using virtual means like zoom, skype and so on.

Henry Nsubuga
Manager, Counselling and Guidance Centre,
Plot 106, Mary Stuart Road (Opposite Mary Stuart Hall),
Makerere University
Email: hnsubuga[at]cgc.mak.ac.ug
Tel: +256-772-558022

Click here for more information about the Counselling and Guidance Centre

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UniCare App: 24/7 Access to Counselling

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UniCare App: 24/7 Access to Professional Counselling Services. Available on Google Play Store.

The Counselling and Guidance Centre (CGC) has developed UniCare, a counselling App for the Makerere University community members (Staff and Students).

Do you have personal concerns that need addressing?

Do you need to improve your life skills?

Are you struggling with something and need to talk to someone professional in confidence?

Then download UniCare from the Play Store and use it at any time of your convenience.

You can access counselling services through instant messaging, phone calls and other forms.

Enquiries:

Tel: +256-751-700897
Email: rbaguma[at]cit.ac.ug, henry.nsubuga[at]mak.ac.ug

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Call for Applications: PhD Fellowships in Bioethics (4th Cohort)

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The Davies Lecture Theatre (Right), School of Biomedical Sciences (Blue) and other buildings at the College of Health Sciences (CHS), Mulago Campus, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda

Applications are invited for PhD fellowships in bioethics from Makerere University College of Health Sciences (CHS) faculty and individuals who participate in the academic activities of the college who are interested and COMMITTED to becoming bioethics scholars.

Successful applicants should be willing to become bioethics scholars as they work within the structured and mentored training programme with a focus on any aspect of international research bioethics related to Health Sciences. Funding will be available to support 2 successful doctoral candidates up to 3 years of accelerated training leading to the award of the Makerere University doctoral degree.

Eligibility

This training is open to faculty including people who contribute to teaching and research at Makerere University or one of its partner institutions in Uganda, who meet any of the following criteria:

a. Able to articulate a clear research bioethics problem of interest to them.
b. Demonstrate prior participation in bioethics, beyond having submitted research proposals to an IRB.
c. Demonstrate a basic understanding of bioethics in order to know that this is an appropriate next step for the applicant.
d. Demonstrate past active participation in bioethics in health service delivery or at the interface of health related ethical-legal issues
e. Provide evidence of experience in research in bioethics and or authorship in this field
f. Prior master’s level or fellowship level training in bioethics or related fields.

Criteria for Selection

  1. Demonstrated interest in doctoral research training and conducting research with a focus on
    research bioethics.
  2. Potential to handle rigorous academic requirements of the doctoral program.
  3. Having a plan for career development
  4. Capacity towards attaining research leadership and international recognition in bioethics.
  5. Female candidates and medical doctors are especially encouraged to apply

Application Process

Applications must be submitted to makbioethics[at]gmail.com and should consist of a cover letter (1 page only), a resume (not more than 3 pages), a personal statement (Maximum 1 page), a Makerere University formatted PhD research concept (Maximum 10 pages) and two letters of recommendation (sent separately by the referees to makbioethics[at]gmail.com). The personal statement should include your contribution to the academic and research life of a department at Makerere University College of Health Sciences, your aspirations for career progression in the next 5-7 years, research interests and any information you consider relevant.

Closing date for the receipt of applications is 8th October 2021.

Enquiries can be forwarded to the PI, of the PhD bioethics research training Program on makbioethics[at]gmail.com

Timelines:

  • Application deadline: October 8, 2021
  • Interviews: October 15, 2021
  • Notification date: October 22, 2021
  • Proposed start date: November 1, 2021

Part of this training will take place at Johns Hopkins University Berman Institute of Bioethics in the USA in Year 1 for a total of 2-3 months. Successful candidates will receive a monthly stipend based on USA National Institutes of Health regulations, tuition, research funds and travel to the USA. Applicants should demonstrate excellent communications skills and will be expected to work as part of a highly motivated, result oriented bioethics group.

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Health

IDI Supports Wakiso’s Point of Care Electronic Medical Records

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Representatives from IDI, Mildmay Uganda and Wakiso District Leadership that took part in the handover of equipment to support EMR-POC on 13th September 2021.

The Makerere University Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI) Kampala Region HIV Project handed over equipment worth UGX 460,000,000 to the Wakiso District Leadership to support Point of Care Electronic Medical Records (EMR-POC). This was made possible with support from the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The equipment includes Computers, furniture, biometric scanners and networking equipment for a wireless mesh. In attendance was the Wakiso District Leadership led by the Principal assistant secretary, Ms. Babirye Olivia, as well as representatives from IDI and Mildmay Uganda.

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