Welcome to the Employee Assistance Research Foundation
It is close to a decade since our milestone gathering in smoke surrounded San Diego as wild fires consumed the dry brush (and more than a few homes) throughout a massive swath of southern California. Circumstances notwithstanding, over 100 enthusiastic EAP professionals convened in advance of the 2007 EAPA Annual Meeting to help launch the Employee Assistance Research Foundation.
In the months that followed, hundreds more joined our mailing list, visited the website and contributed to the important goal of developing EARF as an independent sponsor of unbiased, scientific theory-based research. Despite the onset of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, both EAP companies and individuals stepped up to assure the success of this effort.
The impact of your generosity over the years has been significant. Not only have independent, published studies of the current states of EAP development in North America and Europe been accomplished, but the most thorough and convincing outcome study of the impact of EAP work on workplace productivity has been completed and published, with further analysis and publications to come.
Your Foundation is now turning its attention to a facet of our profession that has been neglected for far too long, i.e., an academically-based archival history of the development of EAP from the early days of Occupational Alcohol Programs to the many diverse services and interventions occurring in virtually every country and culture today.
Please read the attached background and project description carefully and decide how you can best support its development and publication. By contributing to this monumental chronological study, you can become a part of our rich EAP history!
With gratitude and best wishes,
Carl R Tisone, President
Employee Assistance Research Foundation
The Definitive EAP History Project
INTRODUCTION – In any profession, it’s important to know one’s history. Every field of work needs justification; its advocates must be able to explain why it is worth attention. History helps to provide identity, and this is one of the most important reasons for writing and teaching it. With respect to a field of study and work, history tells how we’ve evolved while still retaining cohesion – and makes a field legitimate in the eyes of our stakeholders. Merely defining a field in the present pales against the possibility of forming an identity based on a rich past. And history tells a story, emphasizing the features that define us and an understanding of the values that guided us in our more than fifty years of service delivery. In short, a well-written history provides a literal storehouse of important information and future direction — something that is missing in the EAP field.
THE PROJECT – The Board of Directors of the Employee Assistance Research Foundation has defined the project and completed a comprehensive selection process. Contracts have been awarded to a pair of highly distinguished researchers who will conduct The EAP History Project — the first comprehensive, scholarly, factually-based history ever to be written about Employee Assistance programming. The resulting document will be sequential, accurate, and extremely informative. Our well-documented history will tell a story of the underlying values that define us as a profession. It will provide valuable insights into the theories and practices that have guided us over the past 50-plus years of dedication and service. In this context, we hope that it becomes the resource from which every new field professional begins their search for “EAP identity.” We estimate a total of $100,000 in financial contributions will be required to underwrite this project — and we need the support from our stakeholders to accomplish this task.
With the greatest appreciation for those who have supported EARF in the past, we ask you now — the organizations and individuals from the EAP and workplace behavioral health fields, to help us ensure this valuable research project becomes a reality. The Foundation has already demonstrated its success in generating high-quality research findings in a most cost-effective fashion. And we are confident that you will welcome the opportunity to join us as stakeholders in this activity, one which will provide a lasting legacy for the future. A myriad of levels and opportunities for financial support and recognition are possible and we urge you to visit our website, or contact any of our Board of Directors, or our development team: Bernie McCann firstname.lastname@example.org and Ken Burgess email@example.com to learn more.
Our profession will be greatly enhanced by the archival documentation of our roots and development that The EAP History Project will add to our collective knowledge. Please review the giving and recognition opportunities that are available to you, and make your pledge today.
The Board of Directors
Employee Assistance Research Foundation