Windhoek-The annual ‘Back to School, Stay in School’ campaign aimed at marginalised San, Ovatue and Ovatjimba learners has been progressing well in 2017 with assistance from various corporates.
The campaign to support marginalised community learners was initiated as part of the San Development Programme to ensure learners from disadvantaged communities attend school and remain in school and as receive good an education as other Namibian children.
The six-year-old campaign aims to encourage learners from marginalised communities to go to school and stay in school and renders assistance in the form of school fees, transport, monthly allowances, toiletries and accommodation fees.
Various stakeholders on Tuesday made pledges towards the Back to School campaign, ranging from N$3,000 to N$60,000, as well as material support.
Sponsors, such as First National Bank of Namibia, Namfisa, Oxygen Communications and the MVA Fund were among the many companies that made pledges to help the learners to acquire schoolbags, stationery and sanitary essentials.
Speaking at the donors’ day event, education ambassador Lazarus Shiimi (widely known as Gazza), said the reason the campaign renders assistance to marginalised learners is not to rip them away from their cultures, but to shape them into people who can balance culture and development.
“We do not want to strip the marginalised learners, especially the San, of their culture. Nor do we want to kill the culture, but rather to make a culture which coexists with development,” Shiimi remarked.
The campaign was established in 2010 by the Division of the Marginised Communities in the Office of the Prime Minister, tasked with the integration of marginalised communities into the mainstream economy of the Namibian community.
Addressing the public at the donors’ day event on the merits of noble campaign, Deputy Minister of Marginalised Communities Royal /Ui/o/o expressed gratitude for the financial and material support offered.
“I want to express our gratitude for the financial and material support we have been receiving from our donors and I assure you that what you have been doing and continue to do is highly appreciated by the government of the Republic of Namibia,” /Ui/o/o said.