Tag Archives: Sustainable Development Goals

Windhoek International School Children learn about their rights

The United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) in collaboration with UNICEF Namibia, held a presentation at the UN house on 13 September 2017 about the Convention on the Rights of the Child.   Approximately 40 learners aged between eight and ten from Windhoek International school attended the presentation.

The presentation covered the importance of children’s rights which includes empowering children to enjoy and exercise their rights and to respect and uphold the rights of others as they act to promote justice for peace.

Children were briefed on their responsibilities to know their rights. They have the right to quality education, health care, to a name and nationality as well as the right to freedom of expression. The Children displayed extraordinary engagement and interest in learning about the presentation and the rights they are entitled to.

One child stood up and told the audience that she has the right to equality. “To be treated fairly and with respect and also treat others equally and with dignity”. A child has the right to grow up in a family environment, in an atmosphere of happiness, love and understanding. They have the right to food, shelter, clean water and to be able to participate in the society as individuals.

The presentation was based on the Convention on the Rights of the Child which was adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession recession by General Assembly and is also known as Resolution 44/25 of 20 November 1989. The Government of Namibia adopted it on the 28 September 1990.

The presenters created an atmosphere for the children to engage and participate and ensured that the Children’s Rights are deeply rooted in their minds. Children learned that they have the right to a meaningful life with proper guardians and people who care for them. They learned about how they have the right to, an identity, an official record of who they are, to play, to rest and to have privacy.

The presentation covered the important ways children are protected from abuse and extortion. Emphasis was also placed on children to speak their minds and share their opinions in ways that do not offend or harm others.

At the conclusion of the presentation, learners were presented with scenarios that provided an overview of violations of their rights. They were encouraged to review their rights and discuss ways in which the scenarios violated the Convention on the Rights of the Child. In its totality, the presentation taught the children about their rights, to speak up for themselves and to seek help from their guardians when they think their rights are being violated. The young learner’s engagement showed that they were already very familiar with their rights and well prepared to take on the responsibility of protecting and harboring their rights and those of their peers.

Financial Literacy Decoded: Students at National Health Training Centre “Learn-the-Lingo”

An air of academic prestige was palpable on campus at the National Health Training Centre—revealing an institutional history devout to an increasingly growing field: medical sciences. On the morning of 28 August 2017, UNIC team members walked up to the Training Centre’s administrative building excited about what was about to take place in the company of approximately 80 learners.  The team first met with Ms. Kalimba; she wore a kind smile and created the steadfast impression that she harbored utmost regard for her student’s well-being.

Ms. Kalimba corralled the UNIC team into a traditional-style classroom where the latest UNIC outreach presentation would be unveiled. This week’s presentation was centred on Financial Literacy for youth in Windhoek. The Programme, titled with the auspicious name “Learning-the-Lingo” (LTL) delves into terms and concepts commonly used by financial and banking institutions. These are financial terms and concepts that often erect a terminology barrier and can serve to discourage students from taking advantage of financial services and resources. By decoding common financial lingo [or jargon] the presentation aimed to instil a confidence among youth that will help motivate them to take advantage of financial services such as banking, mobile banking, credit, and loans. The Programme also assists in providing students with a basic understanding of money management strategies and tools to prepare them for the transition into professional lives where they will be confronted with money management opportunities.

At first, students looked puzzled; as to why the United Nations was in their studious habitat revelling in the importance of money management and financial resources. However, the presentation made a fixed effort to round any corners of confusion by elaborating on financial literacy’s unique place within the UN, particularly its relevance to the UN Charter and most importantly, to the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

The presentation’s overarching themes included reasons to save earnings, brief summaries of banking products and services traditionally offered by the big banks in Namibia, the common terms attached to those services, while also endorsing effective financial resources that can kindle the entrepreneurial spirit—a spirit that often lines the ambitions of the industrious youth of today. The Programme also incorporated a highly relatable segment that addressed the “paycheque-to-paycheque lifestyle”—something many youth struggle with as popular culture commonly encourages a lifestyle of hyper materialism and living beyond one’s means. These superficial lifestyles were debunked using the rationale that money spent in excess to convey one’s personal success carries the potential to dissolve that same success.

The presentation corresponded with five of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s). Goal 1—No Poverty, Goal 4—Quality Education, Goal 5—Gender Equality, Goal 8—Decent Work and Economic Growth, Goal 9—Industry Innovation and Infrastructure. Learning-the-Lingo effectively permeated these five (SDG’s) by procuring youth attention towards financial autonomy; motivating young people to take control of their monetary resources. Presenters encouraged young people to make responsible decisions with their savings by using the money management acronym “BISP” which stands for: Budget, Invest, Save, Protect—an acronym which was soon heard being rehearsed by 80 learners in the corridors outside of the classroom. Presentation material also touted the importance of always keeping the enduring sentiment of a “future self” in mind before spending earnings. LTL persuaded young people to devise well-informed plans that will allow them to accumulate, maintain, and grow earnings. Learners were informed of financial resources such as credit services and appropriately structured loans that can relieve daily economic pressures and constraints which so often hamper the potentials and social capital of individuals and stymie entrepreneurial pursuits. Continue reading

Waldorf School learners become #PeacePals

After learning about the importance of international peace, students at Waldorf School, situated on the eastern edge of Windhoek, became #PeacePals and wrote postcards of peace to learners in Indonesia on 15 August 2017.

The United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Windhoek team is aiming to reach 1,000 learners through its #PeacePals programme, and Waldorf School was the fourth of five schools that the Centre will be visiting this year.

Starting off with the presentation, approximately 70 students learned about the negative consequences of conflict on individuals, communities and countries and the different UN bodies focused on conflict resolution and the promotion of peace. The students became aware of how violence directly disrupts social life and opportunities for human prosperity after learning about the refugee crisis in Europe. Passionate about the topic, students frequently chimed in during the presentation to share their concerns with global peace. Continue reading

Striving Towards a Better Future: UNIC Team Empowers Youth at Windhoek Central

180 enthusiastic students from Windhoek Central Primary School received a visit from United Nations Information Centre Windhoek on 9 August  to learn more about its educational outreach programme entitled UN4U. The programme teaches about the goals and vision of the United Nations and specifically focuses how the UN works for each of us.

The presentation showcased the work of UN agencies, programmes and funds in the country guided by the United Nations Partnership Framework (UNPAF)  and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). The primary school learners were intrigued by the various acronyms that were thrown at them and were seemingly curious with topical details on the partnerships the UN creates with the national government  in Namibia. The essential aspect of  this years UN4U outreach challenged the UNIC presenters to break down the core of the presentation into layman’s terms to ensure that the Primary School assemblies comprehend the message conveyed to them.

The UNIC team encouraged a participatory audience and learners were eager to answer questions and share their knowledge about the UN and the 17 Sustainable Goals (SDGs). The learners passed around the microphone to add their voices on the subject matter presented.Recognizing the importance of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, learners felt empowered, learning about their inalienable rights to education, freedom of religion, expression of thoughts and ideas, to feel safe and protected by their caretakers, government and institutions in their community – just to name a few. The youth benefiting more knowledge in learning about the UN itself and the different UN organizations based in Namibia. Continue reading

Sunshine Private School learns how the UN works #UN4U

The third outreach for the UN4U programme took place on 3 August 2017 at the Sunshine Private School in Windhoek.  One hundred of the   senior students at the primary school participated in UNIC Windhoek’s UN4U programme, a programme which teaches how the United Nations works for you!

The presentation included information about the history of the United Nations, the UN Charter and its significance,   UN membership, the different organs of the UN as well as the various agencies, funds and programmes which make up this international organisation. It highlighted children’s rights and the work of UNICEF in particular.It also included a section on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals that are so crucial to the UN’s global mission.  The team also relayed information about the UN System in Namibia and its partnership with government structured in the United Nations Partnership Framework ( UNPAF) which highlights key pillars as the blueprint that drives the UN System in Namibia’s work towards the development agenda in Namibia.

The UN4U outreach created an opportunity for the youngsters to ask questions and engage with the team with the goal of learning more about the United Nations globally and in Namibia. The presentation is delivered in an interactive format that is relatable to students and encourages engagement through question and answer sessions. Through the use of photos, gifs, videos and statistics – the team presented the students with a holistic view of the UN System and its mandate.

The UN4U programme  complemented the school’s curriculum well and nuanced their understanding of the subject matter. UNIC provided UN Charter’s to the school which were placed in the library. In addition, a poster of the Sustainable Development Goals with a catch phrase “Shaping a world that empowers our Youth through the Sustainable Development Goals.”

 

 

UN Namibia Town Hall on “Greening the Blue”

On Thursday, 27th July 2017, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) with the support of United Nations Communications Group (UNCG) hosted the “Greening the Blue” Staff Town Hall to discuss the latest movement in the journey towards making the United Nations House a more environmentally sustainable place. Following former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s 2007 call upon all UN agencies to “go green”, the solar panel launch on the 26th of July at the UN House was a big step towards the Greening the Blue initiative (GtB).

The “Greening the Blue” initiative is part of the UN’s global drive to fulfil its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the foundation of the 2030 Agenda. Within the SDGs, Goal 7, “Affordable and Clean Energy“, strives to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all and Goal 13, “Climate Action“, aims to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts. The GtB initiative strives to create a more mindful UN in order to address environmental sustainability in Namibia and promote the SDGs through exemplary leadership. While the GtB initiative is specifically targeted to reduce carbon footprints in the UN system, its greater aim is to help efforts to design programs and projects in line with international, regional and national aspirations to conserve the environment and limit carbon footprints. Continue reading

Energy Ministry and CoW join solar panel launch at UN House

On Wednesday 26 July 2017, the Deputy Minister of Mines and Energy, Hon. Kornelia Shilunga on behalf of the Hon. Obeth Kandjoze, officially launched the United Nations (UN) House solar panels on Wednesday, 26 July 2017 alongside the City of Windhoek (CoW) and the UN System in Namibia (UN Namibia). The UN House, located in Klein Windhoek, is where UN Namibia offices are located.

As Namibia receives a high amount of sunlight, the UN Resident Coordinator (UNRC) to Namibia, Kiki Gbeho emphasized that the UN’s move towards using solar energy is an opportunity to showcase best practice, in terms of the use of renewable energy in support of Namibian, and global efforts, to combat climate change.

The recently agreed Sustainable Development Agenda, identifies clean energy as an integral part of the global strategy to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all.

“Specifically, Goal 13 of the 17 SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) speaks to Climate Change, while Goal 7, aims to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all,” Gbeho said.

Since the installation in the beginning of May, power usage at the UN House has decreased by approximately 50%, which in monetary terms translates to a total savings of roughly N$ 60,000 per month.

If the current savings trend continues, coupled with the current effort to monitor power usage around the office, UN Namibia forecasts savings of at least 60% in the next few months going forward. This, over time, will result in a large amount of monetary savings that can be implemented into programmatic work as opposed to operational costs.

On behalf of Hon. Kandjoze, Hon. Shilunga highlighted Namibia’s great potential in renewable energy, specifically solar power, with its abundance of land, an average of 300 sunny days per year and the second highest solar irradiation regime in the world. Continue reading

UN Namibia dedicates 67 minutes for Mandela Day

The UN System staff members in Namibia dedicated 67 minutes of their time to the service of humanity in light of the international observance to celebrate Nelson  Mandela. The event, which is commemorated annually on 18 July, calls on the global community to make the world a better place. In the spirit of Nelson Mandela, who devoted 67 years of his life to the public service, individuals are challenged to celebrate his legacy by dedicating 67 minutes of their time to service.

On Tuesday 18 July, the UN System in Namibia came together to help members in the local community.  The UN family delivered as ‘One’  and donated food, clothes and blankets to the Family of Hope Services, a local charity organization. Furthermore, UN Agencies reached out to schools and charity organizations to read, serve lunch and play games with children.

WHO, FAO and UNESCO  staff donated canned food items, while UNIC, UNAIDS, IOM and WFP staff purchased fleece blankets and clothing. The collected items were donated to the Family of Hope Services, which provides education, food and clothing to underprivileged children.The Family of Hope Services was founded in 2003 by Abigail Bachopi and has served orphaned and vulnerable children for over 14 years. With the assistance of 30 volunteers, the organization attends to over 450 children, aiming to restore their hope, joy and dignity through empowering and capacity building programs.

Several agencies spent the day reaching out to organizations in Katutura. The staff of UNICEF visited the Jonas Haiduwa Early Childhood Development (ECD) Centre where they read stories and spent time with the children. The organization serves the needs of 97 children aged 3-6. The centre is jointly run by the City of Windhoek and the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture, and is responsible for educating young children.

UNIC Windhoek staff  teamed up with St. George’s Diocesan School to visit the Tilovayeni Care Foundation, a local soup kitchen and day care centre that serves over 70 children a day. The team and the students delivered a short presentation about Mandela Day, played games with the children and donated food items.

                                                                                                                                                                          UNFPA donated food items to a dedicated family who need support for their 11 children, while UNDP staff members spent the afternoon at the Hope Initiative Centre in one of Katutura’s informal settlements. The team, led by the Resident Coordinator Ms. Kiki Gbeho, relieved the staff at the centre by serving lunch to over 200 children.

By honouring Mandela’s legacy to public service, The UN Family recognizes the importance of making a considerable difference in the lives of the less privileged. The first step to achieving this goal is enabling members of the community to have access to basic needs; to brighten the lives of youth by inspiring them and by making a positive impact in the world.

The United Nations System in Namibia continually strives to implement the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) to move Namibia forward towards the 2030 Agenda. By implementing the vision of Mandela, the UN targeted goal 2, “Zero hunger”, goal 3, “Good health and well-being”, goal 4, “Quality education” and goal 17, “Partnerships for the Goals”.

 

Nelson Mandela Day with UNIC & St. George’s Diocesan School: 67 MINUTES in service

Nelson Mandela International Day is celebrated annually across the globe on 18 July to honour the incredible and inspiring legacy of the late Nelson Mandela. Launched on Mandela’s birthday through a United Nations General Assembly resolution in 2009, the day calls for individuals around the world to dedicate 67 minutes in creating a positive impact in the world.

In light of the commemoration, the United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Windhoek collaborated with four schools in Windhoek for a month-long campaign against hunger through a canned food drive initiative. The project benefitted four local soup kitchens providing food and education to underprivileged children – one of the most vulnerable populations in Namibia.

On Tuesday, 18 July the UNIC team alongside St. George’s Diocesan School set out to make a positive difference at the Tilovayeni Care Foundation, a soup kitchen that caters for underprivileged children in Katutura.  The team and the St. George’s Student Representative Council (SRC’s) arrived in the afternoon at the community soup kitchen that is situated in the quaint suburb of Greenwell Matongo, and engaged with the children who are beneficiaries of the Foundation’s activities. The team aimed to disseminate educational discourse about Nelson Mandela and his values through a short presentation and games.

The interactive presentation was delivered on the fundamental concepts of the United Nations, Nelson Mandela and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s), with each topic accompanied by a short video. The main focus was not only to inform the youth in the community about the importance of activism but to inspire and leave them with a durable sentiment that creating change in the world is still possible, and that we are all part of something bigger than ourselves. Continue reading

DHPS Upholds 67 minutes of Public Service #MandelaDay2017

67 minutes for Mandela is a global UN observance that aims to encourage everyone to dedicate their time to helping others as well as contributing to the unity and progression of humanity. Every year, on the 18 th of July, the world embarks on several charity projects in honour of Nelson Mandela and his great philosophies.

In celebration of this notion, UNIC Windhoek, in co-operation with Deutsche Höhere Privatschule Windhoek (DHPS), held the official hand over of canned food to Havana Soup Kitchen at the DHPS Windhoek  on Monday 17 July 2017. The partnership between DHPS and the UNIC Windhoek is the third of four canned food drives of the Nelson Mandela International Day tribute whereby all individuals and organisations dedicate 67 minutes of their time to an activity helping those in need.

DHPS Windhoek collected approximately 600 canned food items and generously donated to the Havana Soup Kitchen. The hard work constituted DHPS’s collective effort to uphold their 67 minutes of public service while the event paid homage to Mandela’s tireless pursuit to end hunger and empower the world’s most vulnerable and poor by way of collaboration.

Speaking at the event, Ms. Kristin Eicholz, principal of DHPS, paid homage to Nelson Mandela by reflecting on his influential and inspiring activism. Her endnote prompted emotional charge as she iterated, “It is only when poverty no longer holds people back that society as a whole will achieve social justice for all”. Continue reading