Windhoek- A group of German as a Foreign Language learners from Martin Luther High School (MLHS) in Okombahe have won the Start-Up! competition.
The competition followed after two workshops on entrepreneurship provided the platform to pitch business ideas and win a trip to a two-week conference in Berlin, Germany. The conference in Europe will expose them to the start-up environment there and the opportunity to exchange skills with other entrepreneurs, while attending a German language course.
“We have achieved something through the hard work and gained experience to be moving forward to Berlin in August,” says winner Bradley Jodd, who with Alida Katuahupira and Vickson Goraseb presented the winning idea of Road Monitoring Drones.
Motivated by the concern of carnage on Namibian roads, the Grade 11 learners presented the idea of having Namibian roads monitored by drones for better policing, real-time information and a prompt emergency response. “The workshops were great and I would like to thank the organisations involved. We are all grateful for the opportunity and excited about the trip to Berlin in August,” says Goraseb.
The Goethe-Institut Namibia in collaboration with four PASCH-Fit (Schools: Partners for the Future) earlier this year invited learners from Grades 9 to 12 for participation in the competition that is also open in 12 other African countries including Senegal, South Africa, Malawi, Ghana, Kenya, Mali and Burkina Faso. A total of 31 entries were received from Windhoek High School (WHS), MLHS, Otjiwarongo Secondary School (OSS) and Private School Swakopmund (PSS). In the end, six teams (two each from WHS and MLHS, and one from OSS and PSS each) attended two workshops.
All learners agree that they had learnt a lot about entrepreneurship and had made new friends. “The workshops were amazing as all participants grew as a family. Even though we lost, we still feel the winning team deserves it because they are our brothers and sisters,” says Ashwin Scott, who with Teddy Neumann and Cody van Wyk (Grades 8 and 11) presented the idea of a Quick Fix App that connects customers with the house-maintenance industry and craftsmen. Another team also from WHS (Grade 9) comprising of Stephanie van Wyk, Ngatangue Tjiueza and Eva Museta presented the idea of generating energy from waste. They competed with Grade 9 learners from MLHS, Tjavanga Jeomba, Klosn Ndume and Ronaldo Kauzuu, who presented the idea of a mobile app that connects German language teachers between Africa and Germany. The two other teams consisted of Schusmeither Uaisiua, Nkosinathi Hendricks and Thrive Mahua from OSS Grade 12, who presented the Jarokee Recreational Centre in their town that they say needs entertainment; and Ray Simasiku Mutwa, Fillemon Shihepo and Jakes Naoxab from PSS Grade 11 and 8, who presented the idea of providing affordable internet access through WiFi hot-spots in rural areas.