UGANDA COUNSELLING ASSOCIATION LAUNCHES STRATEGIC PLAN FOR 2021 - 2025

By Advocacy Office

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1st UCA president Dr Ruth Ssenyonyi launching the strategic plan with the outgoing UCA president Mr Gaston Byamugisha.

It was a hilarious afternoon on Friday, 30 of April, 2021 during the 17th counsellors annual general meeting held at Silver springs hotel in Kampala as UCA launched its strategic plan for 2021-2025. Planning the future of any organization starts with a realistic understanding of existing products, divisions, margins, profits, skills and human resource capacities. Analysis of the present operations can be done effectively by reviewing the past periods performance and relating it to the current status of the organization.

 

This document outlines the Uganda Counseling Association’s strategic plan to address issues of critical and strategic importance over the course of five years: 2021 - 2025. In addition to our essential ongoing work, we will prioritize initiatives and dedicate extraordinary resources and attention to addressing these issues and achieving the outcomes identified. Uganda Counselling Association (UCA) has registered substantial growth in its membership since its establishment in 2002. This growth in membership and other parameters brings with it challenges that UCA requires to deal with so as to consistently provide professional development to its members.

The development of a strategic plan thus became necessary so as to enable the UCA deal with emerging challenges in the operating environment for the next five years. Having re-examined its mandate and core functions, UCA has re-developed its vision and mission statements, and the core values which will propel it to the future. A situation analysis identified strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the UCA which formed the basis for the identification of the strategic focus areas (Key Result Areas) and objectives for the next five years.

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The vision for UCA is to ensure that Professional Counselling is Embraced. UCA envisages that this Vision will be achieved through focusing on six (6) Key Result Areas. The findings from the situation and SWOT analysis strengthen and validate UCA Key Result Areas. These are outlined in the table below;

Key Result Area 1:Membership Growth and Development

The recruitment of members is seen as the vanguard for the future sustainability of UCA as a viable institution. Therefore, UCA will undertake various strategic activities aimed at ensuring sustained growth of its membership. This goal will aim at increasing membership, diversifying membership, sustaining the membership, instituting systems and structures for membership development so as to create a critical mass of members. Indeed, activities to be carried out will anchor on the weaknesses and threats identified in the SWOT, key among which are the low membership of UCA compared to the potential members, the lack of visibility and knowledge about the operations of UCA, and the inadequate mobilization for new members.


Key Result Area 2:Research and Innovation

As a means of evolving with the changing times and operational environment, UCA will strive to initiate research programmes and activities, and support and promote creative counselling ideas, research and Innovation. This will be achieved in the following ways:

  • Supporting Research by the members and other stakeholders.
  • Initiating Research in areas of public interest.
  • Providing platforms to publicize innovations and publish research findings
  • Facilitating and supporting specialist discussions and dialogues for different counselling issues.


  • Key Result Area 3:Strategic Alliances and Partnerships

    UCA will strive to benefit from the synergies and experiences of the other professional bodies that have stood the test of time through collaboration, experience sharing, and benchmarking. In this regard, UCA will interface and collaborate with other related professional bodies and organizations in Uganda to establish a united front for promoting better professional practice in industry. UCA will also work towards improving its international standing and recognition as a credible international professional organization.

    UCA also recognizes that in a bid to fulfil its mandate, it will have to foster partnerships with other key players and stakeholders in the promotion of good counselling practice. Therefore, as one of the strategic focus areas, UCA will develop partnerships with other key stakeholders in a bid to strengthen and enhance its functionality in tandem with UCA’s Vision and Mission.


    Key Result Area 4:Visibility, Communication and Public Relations

    Corporate identity and visibility are key for every business, because the world needs to know what business you are in, the outputs you churn out and results you produce. This is not an exception for UCA. In recognition of this fact, UCA will invest significant efforts in ensuring that its brand is recognized by all stakeholders.

    This will initially involve rebranding of the Association so as to give it a new look. Other initiatives will include effectively managing the internal and external communication platforms, establishing winning relations with the print and electronic media houses as well as holding several engagement and outreach sessions with the public.


    Key Result Area 5:Governance and Institutional Sustainability

    This Key Result Area will aim at ensuring that there is not only adequate oversight, insight and foresight by both the Board of Trustees and the Board of UCA, but also focus on establishing a functional structure aligned to the strategic direction of UCA.

    Some of the activities under this KRA include developing Terms of Reference for the Board of Trustees, developing a Board Charter for the Board, developing and adopting an appropriate organisational structure for UCA, preparing various policies and procedures, training the board and staff among others.


    Key Result Area 6:Financial and Operational Sustainability

    To carry out the envisaged functions of UCA, the Association will require a financial sustainability plan which clearly defines the Association’s envisaged sources of income. The overall long-term objective of the Association shall aim at achieving self-sustenance through building adequate capacity for internal revenue generation. Efforts will therefore be geared towards building a solid internal resource base, and forging partnerships with external funding agencies and individuals so as to support the goals and aspirations of UCA.

    It is anticipated that UCA will require funds to a tune of UGX 6.5bn to implement the strategic plan.

    To help ensure successful implementation of the strategic plan, a monitoring and evaluation (M&E) framework will be followed. UCA Board of Directors will be responsible for M&E. The participatory strategic planning process was used to ensure ownership of the strategic plan by all stakeholders, thus enhancing effectiveness and efficiency in the implementation of the plan. This entailed mostly the involvement of the Board Members of UCA in the planning process.

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