Fixing homes of Namibian children

The 'Fix My Home' campaign by the Namibian National Students Organisation helps students in tertiary institutions improve their living conditions.

03 March 2020 | Youth

Justicia Shipena





'Fix my Home' is a social development project which was launched earlier this year and is aimed at easing the burden of student housing. The Namibian National Students Organisation (Nanso) will renovate informal housing structures belonging to students in an effort to promote a conducive living and learning environment. The initiative has identified 10 students, with Bertha Iileka, an accounting student at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (Nust) from Greenwell Matongo informal settlement being the first beneficiary. The project will roll-out nation-wide.

Speaking to The Zone, president of Nanso Simon Taapopi said the campaign was inspired by Iileka, who used her non-tuition fees to fix her home, however, the builders did a below average job.

Taapopi said bearing in mind that this situation affects other students and learners in the community, Nanso decided to embark on the 'Fix My Home' project which will go to informal areas like Okuryangava and Gorengab to fix shacks with materials they receive from sponsors.

"This initiative aims at ensuring that students study and learn in a conducive environment. The bigger picture of ensuring housing is affordable, especially to students, is the start of implementation of the student villages and ensuring that every Namibian has access to affordable housing and land," he said.

Taapopi added that seeing that the project is in its initial stages and as any other project of this nature, they have been experiencing challenges relating to support and a working schedule.

"However, we embrace these challenges and are working around the clock to ensure they are being dealt with. We have not yet fixed any home yet and we are calling on all strata of society to come together and help us help the Namibian child," he said.

He further said the student accommodation crisis will be addressed by the implementation of the land conference resolution to have student villages as tabled by Nanso and noted by Cabinet.

Taapopi added that Nanso, together with its stakeholders, will continue to ensure that they think of new and innovative ways to assist the Namibian child as well as ensure they disrupt systems that are not working and increase efficiency.

According to Iileka, the Fix My Home initiative has made her realise that there are Good Samaritans out there.

"This started the first day I made the Twitter thread pleading for assistance and I will forever be grateful to everyone who has reached out to help in whatever way and to those who still continue to do so," she said.

Iileka said it also opened her mind the reality that it is okay to ask for help and it has given her hope to carry on.

"I know I am not alone in this fight to give me and my family a conducive place to stay and study. I am thankful for Nanso's efforts and I am looking forward to the end results," she said.

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