One prominent leader of the first world once said, ‘Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.’
It is perhaps with this understanding that HANO Youth Foundation, a registered charity organisation whose main object is to uplift the living standards of young people in Namibia, is preparing to unveil the first ever HANO Youth Expo.
Slated for June 29- July 1 in Otavi, the HANO Youth Expo, according to the organisation’s Youth Expo coordinator, Nocky Kaapehi, is meant to inspire young people to seize existing opportunities that the country has to offer whilst empowering them to align their endeavours with the existing developmental blueprints such as the Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP).
“The engines of growth are no longer steam-powered. Instead collaboration and partnership have taken its place, becoming the driving force behind new developments,” says Kaapehi, enthusing that with the planned event, the organisers will showcase the immense possibilities that can found within well-orchestrated partnerships and unity of purpose.
“We are envisioning the attendance of between 200 and 300 youth as participants. The event also is already attracting representatives from youth organisations, vocational training centres, politicians, policymakers, the general public and the media. Overall it is expected that approximately 1,000 people will attend some section of the HYE over the three days,” Kaapehi maintains confidently.
The Governor of the Otjozondjupa Region, Otto Ipinge, confirms accepting being patron of the event. Other speakers expected to grace the occasion according to Kaapehi include presidential advisor on youth matters, Dasry Mathias, Deputy Minister of Disability Affairs, Alexia Ncube, Minister of Youth, Sport and National Service, Erastus Utoni, and secretary of the National Youth Council, Mandela Kapere.
“They are currently only potential speakers. Official letters have been written to them to request their presence and we are still waiting for their replies. Only the patron of the event has confirmed his attendance,” Kaapehi says.
He further reveals that the organisers are looking forward to the attendance of former presidents, Sam Nujoma and Hifikepunye Pohamba, as well as First lady Monica Geingos.
Hosted under the theme, ‘Connecting minds,’ the event is further aimed at providing a networking platform for young leaders through panel discussions on issues of socio-economic, cultural and even political relevance.
The HANO Youth Expo is being hosted as an alternative to the Otavi Trade Expo, an initiative of the town council that has been shelved due to budgetary constraints.