Focus Sessions

In the Focus Sessions, we'll inform, inspire and entertain for African aviation safety. In each session, we’ll receive guests in the studio to we provide you an insight in the exciting world of safety and its professionals. Your host, Foundation Director Tom Kok, will ensure a healthy and interesting debate.

The Focus Sessions provide differing perspectives in respect to important issues in the safety domain of the aviation industry in Africa.

Wanna learn more about the the topics of our Focus Sessions? You'll find more info about the sessions below. We want to include you among our loyal audience and have you tune in for each new episode.

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Why Focus Sessions?

Our industry is undergoing 'belt tightening'. That is unavoidable during any recession, and this pandemic-induced one is no exception. Training is often one of the first things to go in times when resources are limited. Travel budgets are being cut because of COVID-19, and time out of the office is at a premium when team headcounts are reduced to skeletal levels. The massive reduction in traffic means that many aviation professionals are not performing their normal tasks. Sometimes, they are doing a substantially different job, and other times they not working at all or at a substantially reduced frequency. Simulator and classroom-based training is also not taking place. Together, this creates a reduction in the skills and knowledge of aviation professionals, and with it associated safety risks.

The problem is that skills erosion in aviation negatively affects safety– so when the economy does finally turn around, we don’t have reliability in safety & quality on tap to take full advantage of the resurging economy.

AviAssist helps aviation organisations and companies create the right conditions for their staff so they can give their best each day. We are keen to help employers strengthen to commitment to their employer’s goals and values and be motivated to contribute to organisational success. Ideally, we can realize that with an enhanced sense of their own well-being. It is about helping create conditions in which employees offer more of their capability and potential. Having employees who are fully engaged with their organisation will increase productivity and helps realize higher customer satisfaction, crucial for increased revenue.

Here's the program for our first 5 Focus Sessions:

7 January - Crisis management with Kenyon Chairman Emeritus Robert A. Jensen - Kenyon is one of the biggest disaster management company in the world with lots of aviation clients and extensive experience with aviation disasters. In this episode, we'll be talking to Robert about his new book 'Personal Effects' and lessons that can be drawn from it when it comes to airline crashes.

28 January - Work Related Stress & Peer Assistance Networks We will be joined by Dr. Lucas van Gerwen, Dr. Joan Cahill, Dr. Tina Harris, Dr. Maria Papanikou, Felicien Izaturwanaho and RwandAir Captain Robert Gobac, MD to talk about work related stress and how the start of Peer Assistance Networks in African aviation could help address mental health in our industry.

25 February - Flight operations into Africa –KLM Royal Dutch Airlines KLM is one of the main operators into Africa already for many decades. We will be looking at their flight operations into Africa and safely optimizing routes while ensuring compliance. What has improved over the last 10-15 years? What opportunities are there for  further improvements? How can you safely optimize routes while ensuring compliance? Our guests will be Ben Uffen – KLM flight dispatch instructor, Capt. Menno Kroon (Chief Pilot of KLM's  Airbus 330 & Boeing 747 fleet) and Capt. Auke Dros (KLM Vice President of Crew Training)

25 March - Working as an ATO across cultures - Marvin Rangarira Marvin started his career as an air traffic controller in Zimbabwe. From there, he joined one of the leading Air Navigation Service Providers in Africa, ATNS. He now works as an ATC Training Specialist at Dutch Air Traffic Control (LVNL). What lessons are there to be learned from his journey? How can you deal with change in your career, especially if you cross cultural borders too? What has he learned about training and selection of ATCOs in his colourful career?

29 April - E-learning for safety – what works and what doesn’t We have all had to make a sudden switch to loads more e-learning since the onset of the Corona Pandemic. What lessons have we learned about what good e-learning looks like? What new skills do online trainers & regulators need? What is the impact of e-learning on students and teachers? Join Jules Kneepkens (Tata Online academy) KLM's Manager Crew Safety & Security Training Charlotte Bouman and ATRs Géraud Rivals de Mazères for a frank discussion on what works and what not.