Each Wednesday, the United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Windhoek celebrates women and their accomplishments. In light of Global Day of Parents, UNIC Windhoek celebrates its own Beauty Kalokela, a woman who has dedicated her life to her family while juggling a job and giving back to the community.
Global Day Parents Day is observed on the 1st of June every year. It provides an opportunity to appreciate parents for their selfless commitment to children and their lifelong sacrifice towards nurturing this relationship. Beeuty exemplifies this selfless commitment to her family every day.
Beauty, who has worked for UNIC Windhoek for 14 years, grew up in Mpola, a village in Katima. Her mother brought her to Zambia after a divorce with her husband where Beauty attended grade 1 and 2. After Beauty’s father found out she was in Zambia, he sent his sister to fetch her, and Beauty returned to Namibia in 1978. She then restarted and finished primary school in Katima as well as part of secondary school. Beauty did not finish secondary school because her step mother did not support her and she moved out of her father’s home and stayed with her cousin. Later, she moved to Windhoek.
In 1990 she was married traditionally, and then in 1997, she and her husband went to the magistrate and had a wedding. They lived outside of Windhoek at a military base until they bought a house in Windhoek in 1999. She has five children, ranging from 2-26 years of age. Her last born is named Blessing, as her birth was a surprise and a blessing. She also has one grandchild named Joy, who has brought joy to her family.
Juggling her family, her work and her extensive involvement in the community has kept Beauty busy. “It’s not that easy. It is difficult being a mother. However, people I’m working with are good people. If my child is sick they allow me to go to the doctor and take care of my child,” Beauty explains.
Beauty says that being surrounded by her loving family has been the best part of being a mother. Beauty’s parents and grandparents are no longer alive and she says that, “I’m not alone anymore. Sometimes I sit and think if I did not have children, I would sit and be very quiet. But now my house is loud and happy, and I am very thankful.”
Before Beauty starting working at UNIC Windhoek on 8 April 2002, her husband worked briefly in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and she only received N$500 a month from him to support her and her family. In order to make extra money, Beauty worked hard to sell sweets and sewn goods to make extra money.
Because of this experience, Beauty urges women to get involved and find what they are passionate about and to not sit around to wait. Although she did not finish secondary school, she believes that even without an education people can do something and make something of themselves, they just have to put in some hard work.
“As a woman you have to work really hard. If you just sit at home and wait for someone to help you, it won’t happen. You can’t wait for your husband or boyfriend to take care of you,” Beauty says.
A spiritual woman who is involved with her Church, Beauty says, “Sometimes when God sees you trying he will say, ‘Child let me help.’”
In light of Global Day of Parents, Beauty urges parents to continue working to help their children and family even when challenges arise, such as financial struggles. She says, “It’s difficult when you don’t know where to start. Sometimes you have to borrow money. I started by borrowing N$100 from a friend.”
She continues, emphasizing the importance of equality in relationships, “If one pocket is bringing in money, sometimes there is stress at the end of the month which causes fighting.”
In terms of women’s empowerment, Beauty mentions that things are different now than they were a few decades ago. Beauty explains, “These years are not like before when parents had farms and food. The rain that time was so that you could cultivate and get things from the farm. Now-a-days there is not enough rain, and people have to work hard and work together to get things”
Beauty continues, “It’s important to know how to do the same work as your husband. What is the difference? If my husband can do it, why can’t I? We must know how to do everything equally so that we can support one another.”
A peaceful woman, Beauty gets along with many people and enjoys helping out her community. If someone is sick, she enjoys lending a helping hand and being there for people who do not have all that she does. If someone does not have food or clothes, she likes to give it to them.
“We have to share. If I am going to eat, what about them?” Beauty says. A very selfless woman, her motto in life is that she works and does everything for her children. UNIC Windhoek is honoured to have such a caring woman as Beauty on its staff and celebrates her dedication to her family and loved ones.