Greetings to all WAIMH Affiliates. This brief update has five foci: a brief personnel update from Anna; a note about affiliate bylaws; update on the WAIMH study groups; update on the affiliate council voting process survey; and an invitation to raise any affiliate issues/news/special events.
News from Anna:
Some of you who attended the WAIMH congress in Edinburgh will know I was elected Affiliate Rep, though you did not see me in the room as I was busy presenting when the election took place. I was however, very honoured to have been chosen by you all to represent all affiliate member organisations on the WAIMH board and executive. As an Australian, I am an enthusiastic traveller. If I am likely to be in your corner of the globe, I’ll try and make contact through your local affiliate.
Connecting with local WAIMH affiliates is something I would encourage you all to do whether you are travelling, or at your desk at home or work, as we have a lot to share and learn from each other. The ways we work in infant mental health around the world are diverse and while some affiliate groups have been in place for a while, others are new and developing. Finding others who share our goals to advance infant mental health, wherever we work, can inspire, sustain and encourage us at times when we are isolated, challenged or experience setbacks.
Affiliate By-laws and use of the WAIMH logo
As WAIMH Affiliates we are engaged with two complimentary sets of by-laws: the WAIMH by-laws and the affiliate by-laws. Over the course of our correspondence with some of you, we often return to these documents for guidance. While no set of by-laws can address all the issues an affiliate will address, they do address many of them.
For example, did you know that your association’s communication materials are required to display the WAIMH logo and indicate you are an affiliate member? Anna reflected that she was reminded of this herself recently because the Australian Affiliate AAIMHI has been developing new branding and was checking what the WAIMH affiliate requirements are. In addition, having the WAIMH connection clearly displayed on all affiliate communication can also help each affiliate’s profile as it directly indicates that your organisation is part of an international organisation.
WAIMH Study Groups (preaffiliate groups)
WAIMH study groups are groups who as yet do not meet the criteria to become an affiliate. However, they are in the process of developing their membership and are actively engaged with the administrative processes of becoming an affiliate.
There are currently 6 study groups at various stages of readiness on their way to becoming an affiliate. The study group initiative provides emergent groups, such as China, with an identity within WAIMH as they develop into an affiliate. In addition as we support these groups and connect them with other WAIMH members, a pathway is established for new groups to get to know WAIMH members from an array of affiliate.
Update on the AC voting process survey
This survey is ready to be launched and you will receive this soon. The survey is short, brief and reflects the conversations held at both the Cape Town and Edinburgh AC meetings. Minna Sorsa, in the WAIMH Office, has been tirelessly upgrading the data spread sheets and when this process is complete she will then be able to send this survey to you.
An invitation to table any affiliate issues with us over the next couple of months
A core task of the Affiliates Council (AC) involves identifying and meeting the needs of affiliates at varying stages of their development. While groups have unique needs, a shared quest from study groups through to established affiliates is for training and supervision and the sharing of infant mental health knowledge, skills and competent practice training.
In response, the WAIMH Board are actively exploring ways to use WAIMH’s developing social media capacity to help address this ongoing need. For example, suggestions have included: the use of webinars, online cyber-guests and sharing keynote speaker recordings via the WAIMH website. Given the centrality of this issue across affiliates, it is our intention to hold this issue at centre stage over the next year. In addition, as we begin to prepare for WAIMH Congress 2016, we wanted to take the opportunity to invite you to share with us:
Any issues that you might like to be considered over the next twelve months. This is always a time when it’s busy with many projects on the go; and or
Any special events or milestones within your affiliate.
We will then share this news in the next edition of Perspectives. In addition, it also gives us the opportunity to table any issues on your behalf with the WAIMH Board.
Finally we wish you all the very best with your affiliate activities over the next months. We are always pleased to hear from you: your news, queries and challenges.
Chair of the Affiliates Council),
Affiliate Council Representative,
Switzerland and Australia