Monday, 26 June 2017 09:00

NAMIBIA: Youths Dream of a Better Future for the African Child

Windhoek, 21 June 2017 -- Justine Asser’s dream is to help improve the lives of less fortunate children, especially those living on the streets.
A final-year student at the College of the Arts she is one of the youth we spoke to in order to gauge their understanding of the origin and essence of the Day of the African Child.

“As a philanthropist, I believe my dream will come true someday,” says. She had spent the day casting actors for her upcoming short film, entitled ‘Ill’, as her end-of-year college project.

“People celebrate this day to honour the lives of many young students who were killed, and also to raise awareness of the continuing need for improvement of education provided to African children,’ says Asser, adding that the day has been created to honour learners and youths, who participated in the 1976 Soweto resistance.

Namibian learners joined the rest of the African continent to celebrate the Day of the African Child last Friday under the theme ‘2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development for Children in Africa: Accelerating Protection, Empowerment and Equal Opportunity’.
Elizabeth Mwengo said the day was important, because they celebrated the heroes and heroines that fought for their rights. “We celebrate their bravery. Those that stood up for their rights encouraged us to go ahead and fight for ours, as well.”

She says her dream is to see all African children in school and to have better futures. Mwengo spent the day at the College of the Arts (COTA) having fun with fellow students.

“We are excited because we won the battle at our college after the protest. Our courses will no longer be put on hold. We also fought for our right to education,” she said proudly.

Hilia Johannes said the Day of the African Child is celebrated in memory of students who fought for their right to be educated. “We celebrate it because we have to remember those who marched and the struggle they went through.”

Johannes’ dream is to see every African child off the streets and in school, to see everyone employed or having their own businesses to make a living.

D’angelo Gaseb said the day was for honouring those who participated in the Soweto uprising. “We celebrate this day, so we recognise the lives of those who fought for their rights,” says Gaseb, adding that his dream is to see everyone (especially children) believe in their dreams, not giving up, regardless of the situation and to see more children being involved in practical things.” He spent the day playing soccer at Wanderers Sports Field.

Anna Penavali said the day is to provide all stakeholders, including government, an opportunity to reflect on children’s rights. “We celebrate this day to recognise the lives of those who marched in 1976 to protest against poor quality education,” she says.
Her dream is to see educated and well-informed youth, [who are] more involved in social development issues. “I would like to see a smile on every child’s face and knowing their rights and to see everyone doing something that they are passionate about.” She spent her day at school.

By Pinehas Nakaziko


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