Human Resources
Welcome to Stellenbosch University

Employee Assistance Programme



In the inaugural speech delivered by the Rector and Vice Chancellor, Prof Russel Botman, the following was stated:

“The challenges of credibility, relevance, student success and people management and diversity…require a new long term pedagogical framework – a pedagogy of hope”.

It has been the decision of the management of Stellenbosch University to align the core activities of learning, research and community involvement with a few central themes of the United Nation’s Millennium Development Goals, one of which is:

“Promoting physical and psychological wellness and promoting the restoration of the dignity of people."

The Human Resources division will therefore through the Wellness Programme provide for an organisational environment that supports effective and efficient service delivery, while as far as reasonably possible taking employee’s personal circumstances, including disability, HIV and Aids and other health issues into account, by establishing and promoting the concept of “wellness”

The SU also recognises and acknowledges that human capital is the most important resource in the institution, and any loss in human resources results in a loss of productivity and service delivery.

It is accepted that problems (social, emotional, personal or work-related) may influence work performance and that the employer is obliged to provide assistance where required and also to provide programmes that promote their general health and well-being.

EAP Approach

The SU’s EAP approach is to provide an EAP, co-ordinated via the Wellness Programme, to employees who:

  • faces personal, family or work-related problems, or

  • would like to prevent these problems from developing.


The purpose of this institutional approach is to provide guidelines to the Head of the Institution on the practical implementation of the EAP. It also seeks to minimise the impact of psychosocial problems experienced by employees which could influence work performance and in turn productivity.

Scope of Application

The approach applies to all employees who are deemed eligible by the SU.

Regulatory Framework

This institutional EAP approach draws its legal and general guidelines from the following prescripts:

  • Constitution of RSA, 1996

  • Labour Relations Act, 1995, as amended.

  • Basic conditions of employment Act, 1997 (as amended)

  • Skills Development Act, 1998

  • Occupational Health and Safety Act, 1993, section 8 (1)

  • Compensation for Occupational injuries and Diseases Amendment Act, 1997.


The following principles will underpin the approach to manage the EAP within Stellenbosch University:

  • Accessibility – the programme must be available to all employees who qualify.

  • Accountability – emphasis will be on ensuring cost-effective resourcing.

  • Balanced approach – both employer and employee will take responsibility for employee well-being.

  • Confidentiality – information provided in counselling remains strictly confidential.

  • Consistency – all participants in the programme must be treated equally.

  • Responsibility – employees are encouraged to take responsibility for self-referral to the programme.

  • Sensitivity – Management/Line Manager and Counsellors to display sensitivity towards employees’ needs.

EAP Provisions

Stellenbosch University affirms that:

  • All employees qualify to use the service.

  • Employees may refer themselves directly to EAP, or may ask their Line Manager, or a colleague to assist them with the referral.

  • Referral via the Disciplinary process will be documented by the Line Manager, but it remains the responsibility of the staff member to utilize the programme or not.

  • Time off for appointments during working hours must be handled according to the Line Manager’s discretion.

  • All personal information will be treated as strictly confidential.

Programme Component

The SU’s EAP shall have the following components:

  • Marketing and Awareness activities

    • These activities shall be undertaken on a regular basis.

  • Individual intervention and referral

    • Individual assistance to employees in need will be available.

  • Workplace intervention

    • Guidance and assistance in dealing with difficulties relating to interpersonal issues and conflict within the workplace will be offered.

  • Training and Development

    • All employees have access to training in self-management and personal development to assist them in everyday life challenges.

Guidlines for Referral

Voluntary or Self Referral

  1. The employee may arrange an appointment for him/herself.

  2. Interviews will generally be held in the office of the Manager:  Employee Wellness unless elsewhere by arrangement.

  3. Line Manager/Managers must be informed timeously of appointment times, and if possible the number of sessions which the employee will be attending (if on duty time is used).

  4. No feedback is given by Wellness personnel to the Line Manager/Manager.

Informal Referral

  1. A staff member may be referred by any professional person, a friend or  Line Manager/Manager.

  2. Bullets 2 – 4 above are applicable.

Formal referral

(Click here to download a form)​

  1. When a Line Manager/Manager identifies sub-standard work performance, a formal referral to EAP must be in writing, and this must be documented.

  2. The focus of the referral must be on job performance, not personal opinions or judgements.

  3. Attendance by the staff member is not mandatory.  However, attendance or non-attendance after a formal referral will be documented.

  4. If the staff member chooses to attend, the Manager:  Employee Wellness will give written feedback (process only) to the referring Line Manager/Manager regarding the number of sessions attended as well the management plan.

  5. If the staff member is referred for an alcohol or drug dependency problem and is further referred to a rehabilitation centre for treatment, the Manager:  Employee Wellness will act as liaison person between the Rehabilitation centre and the University.

 Monitoring and Evaluation

The Manager:  Employee Wellness must monitor the implementation of this Institutional approach and evaluate the programme with due regard to changing circumstances within the institution and the greater community.​

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