WINDHOEK - Two poverty alleviation projects administered by the Office of the Prime Minister yesterday received a donation of N$150 000 from Standard Bank Namibia.
Prime Minister Nahas Angula received N$100 000 on behalf of the San Development Trust (SDT), while N$50 000 went to the National Alliance for Improved Nutrition (NAFIN).
The donations comprise one percent from gate-takings during the Standard Bank Auto Show held last month, as well as from the bank’s Vehicle and Asset Finance Department.
The San Development Trust was initiated in 2005, while NAFIN, which is chaired by Prime Minister Angula, was launched in 2010.
Both poverty alleviation initiatives cover marginalised Namibians such as the San, Ovatue and Ovatjimba communities.
The goal of NAFIN is to coordinate the activities of stakeholders in the field of nutrition and to serve as a clearing house for nutrition-related outputs. NAFIN activities focus on reducing malnutrition and promoting good nutrition for all, with a focus on women and children.
It also develops capacity for service delivery across key government sectors that include agriculture, health, education, gender and child welfare.
Angula serves on a high-level task force on the global food security crisis on behalf of NAFIN, since the beginning of this year.
The Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement is for all countries whose populations experience under-nutrition and for all stakeholders committed to providing support.
The SUN Movement helps to ensure that financial and technical resources are accessible, coordinated, predictable and ready to scale up nutrition.
Governments are encouraged to prioritise food and nutrition security and in particular, governments are encouraged through this initiative to come up with nutrition interventions such as promoting antenatal nutrition, breastfeeding, food fortification and complementary feeding.
“We are a very unequal society in Namibia. We are trying to focus on the San youth to bring them into the mainstream so that can sustain themselves in their adult life, without them depending on government handouts,” said Angula.
Handouts, he said, take away a person’s dignity and the funds from the bank will be used mostly for the education, special attachment and other possibilities for the training of the marginalised.
“We face a serious challenge in Namibia. Infant mortality. Why is it happening? There are underlying challenges according to the health of young mothers,” he said.
“Some of the challenges are malnutrition with low levels of vitamins and iron in the diets of children, resulting in them not corresponding to their age and height when growing.
“The consequence is that when a child lacks micro-nutrients, especially in the first 1000 days of their lives, their cognitive development is affected,” the prime minister said.
The PM said his office is currently carrying out a survey to develop strategies and design campaign messages in support of a national response on nutrition.