More than 35 employees and commissioners of the National AIDS Commission converged at the Golden Gate Hotel in Paynesville from May 10th to 12th, 2017 for the Commission’s Staff Retreat, the first of its kind since the Commission first came into existence through an executive order of the President of Liberia in 2008. Participants were drawn from all departments and units, as well as from the Commission’s offices in Grand Bassa, Bong, Nimba, Lofa, Bomi and Margibi Counties.
The National AIDS Commission’s Annual Staff Retreat was held for the following reasons:
1. To obtain a complete management skill
2. To strengthen understanding of the role of the Commission in coordinating and managing the national response
3. To promote teamwork within the organization
4. To develop and strengthen an efficient and effective management team
In his opening remarks, National AIDS Commission Chairman Dr. Ivan F. Camanor admonished everyone to contribute to the overall goals and mission of the Commission. Speaking in very simple and illustrative terms for the understanding of all members of the staff, Dr. Camanor compared the goal of the National AIDS Commission to that of a group of people travelling to Foya, Lofa County. What each member of the Foya delegation does during the journey, he explained, will determine whether the trip will be successful or not. In the same way, he encouraged NAC staff to work together to ensure the success of the Commission in achieving its mandate, which is to coordinate a multi-sector national response to HIV and AIDS in Liberia.
At the Annual Staff Retreat, the first of its kind held after nearly nine years of the Commission’s existence, staff of the Commission jointly set the mission, vision, and core values of the entity. Other highlights of the Retreat include presentations on myths and misconceptions of HIV and AIDS; Effective Team Building, Policies of the Commission including the Communications, Human Resources and Table of Authority. Presentations were also made on the PPCC Law, Internal Audit, a SWOT Analysis of the Commission, and the Role of the National AIDS Commission as it relates to Coordination and Management of the National HIV Response.
Discussions at the NAC Staff Annual Retreat were very interactive, participatory and general lots of discussions.
The National AIDS Commission was established by an act of the Legislature in September 2010. The Commission, established with a mandate of coordinating and managing the decentralized multi-sector response to HIV and AIDS, has rapidly grown in terms of staff capacity. However, numerous challenges continue to face the Commission in the fulfillment of its mandate including lack of knowledge of staff on the mandates of the Commission, low financial support from government, among others.