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President’s Message



President's Message - March 2016

I am delighted with the success of the Executive Management Team (EMTM) and Council Meetings which were held in Medellin, Colombia, from 29 February to 11 March.

The Federation is grateful that Member Organisations are committed to supporting the work of the organisation by facilitating the venue for its Executive Management Team and Council meetings. These meetings would not have taken place without the enormous efforts from our Colombian colleagues, who worked hard to support all of the successful outcomes that we were able to achieve working together and building on the hard work that had gone before in Colombia. Congratulations.

In my welcome to the Council Meeting, I focussed on the many aspects that make WFOT unique. WFOT has a longstanding relationship and history of outcomes and outputs with the World Health Organization (WHO) and other international organisations (International Labour Organisation – ILO) and international Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs). WHO is part of the United Nations (UN) and as a result WFOT has a direct collaboration with the United Nations as a member of the UN Department of Public Information – Non Governmental Organisations (DPI-NGO) international network and through its Global Compact Agreement. WFOT has direct overview and global interaction mechanisms pertaining to international policy and directives that are mandated to WHO Member States. It synthesises the delivery of occupational therapy services and education worldwide to establish global benchmarks that are both audited and reviewed. It provides internationally accepted guidance and standards through position statements, education standards and competencies. It enables global interaction and synergies through networking, such as OTION, marketing, advertising and sponsorship. Research, data sets, international evidence based practice through the peer review journal and a World Congress are also provided.

WFOT leverages off its economies of scale and as a result it harnesses expertise and international perspectives on various subject areas. Many international review teams contribute to developing global responses to issues impacting on occupational therapy internationally. A range of WFOT International Advisory Groups contribute to major pieces of ongoing work. WFOT provides the international repository and archive for the profession, which is currently held in the Wellcome Library in London. It coordinates the global and interactive media to celebrate the international profile of the profession, evidenced by 17,000 followers on Facebook and 4,000 on Twitter. And most importantly, it has an outstanding knowledge and understanding of the occupational therapy profession in most cultures of the world through its member organisations.

Throughout the Council Meeting the WFOT Council moved efficiently and effectively through a comprehensive and exciting agenda. WFOT is discussing and involved in high level activity on the international stage. WFOT continues to address major issues that the profession is facing, both internally and externally, and undertaking projects that will make a difference to the profession internationally and those we serve. WFOT Council worked collectively, collaboratively, inspirationally and supportively as a group during our meetings.

As the President of WFOT, it was an absolute privilege to work with WFOT Council Meeting participants and I am so proud of the achievements. I look forward to continuing to work with and lead the WFOT Executive Management Team and Council until the next Executive and Council Meetings in South Africa, May 2018.

You can find information about the meetings in Colombia via your Delegate, and the WFOT March e-newsletter (circulated to those who have registered on the WFOT website; or who have subscribed via this link; and via social media) 

Best wishes
Marilyn Pattison

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