N$1m for #BeFree project amidst unclear plan of action
The Youth Campus aims to create a one-stop solution for youth between the ages of 13 and 30 to receive integrated multidisciplinary services that offer a holistic approach to youth health. The campus will cater to young people's physical and psychological well-being, providing medical services, counselling, and support for life skills.
The training facility that the Capricorn Foundation has contributed to includes online learning and after-school tutoring with access to educational resources, IT facilities, a soup kitchen, an outdoor gym, while the STEM centre will provide support in STEM subjects, coding classes, a library and free Wi-Fi.
Speaking at the handover, Marlize Horn, Executive Officer at the Capricorn Foundation, said the foundation believes that it is pivotal to address social inequalities that threaten youth development. "We do this via two of our focus areas: education and training and entrepreneurial skills development; both which the #BeFree Youth Centre aims to achieve through their different activities.”
First lady Monica Geingos added: “It is important that we invest in young people, and this is why the #BeFree Youth Campus has been established and empowered by the youth, to create a safe space where they can unlock their full potential, express themselves, receive multidisciplinary services and address taboo topics.”
Deciding on future
A visit by Namibian Sun to the campus revealed that though launched, the institution is not open to the public yet.
Ileni Hitula, communications officer of the One Economy Foundation and the Office of the First Lady, indicated that the launch was put in motion to propagate awareness. In the meantime they have held a series of activities during their first weeks.
Hitula mentioned that they are planning to hold a meeting on Tuesday to discuss and determine the plan of action, including admission criteria, which will be made available to the public soonest.
Presently, they are considering an approach in which young individuals would sign up for campus membership to access its services. This membership may entail a nominal fee, estimated to be around N$10, which can be earned through accruing points by volunteering at the campus.
“Given that this is presently the sole facility accessible in the country, we are mindful of the possible space constraints. The membership will focus on guaranteeing equitable access for all campus users by enrolling them solely in their preferred fields, allowing other available services to remain accessible to those who are also interested,” said Geingos.