Who are we?
The Transformation Action Group (TAG) was established in 2015 through the head of department and was initially comprised of members of the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, UCT. However, being based at Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital (RCWMCH), the committee has expanded to include representations from the many divisions that serve the Children’s Hospital, including nursing, surgical disciplines and anaesthestics to name a few. TAG also works closely with RCWMCH management to foster an institutional culture change.
Andrew Argent - HOD
Marc Hendricks – Faculty TEC Chair
Aneesa Vanker - Chair
Liesl Zuhlke – Vice-Chair
The “VOICES” session were introduced in 2015. The intention is to address issues of institutional climate and to open avenues for dialogue around topics that are conventionally considered ‘sacred cows e.g. race, gender, sexual orientation etc.
The VOICES format has traditionally involved two guest speakers, the first to set the intellectual landscape and raise controversies in that field, the second is usually a member of the department who speaks about their lived experience. We believe that one of the fundamental ways to shift thinking and by proxy action is to appeal to people’s intellect and their heart: the VOICES sessions do exactly that by situating the issues very specifically in the work environment amongst the people we work with.
These sessions occupy our Wednesday morning academic meeting slot which draws an average of 100-200 guests ranging from full professors and hospital administrators to undergraduate students of every rank and spanning disciplines: doctors, nurses, allied medical professionals and PASS staff. We have three sessions a year. Two additional sessions this year will tackle issues around disability and faith.
The sessions have become increasingly popular over time and it is our contention that it has been instrumental in shifting the consciousness of the department so that we can finally embark on building a transformation plan for the department.