Namibia

 

New Opportunities

Posted by WTTech in Namibia

WorldTeach alumna Kristin continues to support learners in Namibia long after her return home to the United States. Walalapo, friends! Remember that time that I lived in Namibia for a year? Well, I may not be in the village anymore (though my table manners would make you think otherwise), but I still have some news from Omege for you! Way back when in October 2013, I started a fundraiser to provide school uniform shoes to all of the learners at my school that could not afford them. I was overwhelmed by the generosity of friends, family, and acquaintances, as I received more than enough funds to cover the 60+ pairs of shoes that were purchased and distributed. After all of…

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Namibia

Posted by WTTech in Namibia

As WT volunteer Elizabeth adjusted to Namibian culture, she learned proper hitchhiking technique, here demonstrated by three of her enthusiastic learners.   As I have often mentioned in previous posts, hitchhiking, known here colloquially as simply “hiking,” is the most common mode of transport in Namibia. In the village, few people own their own cars, so the only way to travel out of the village is to catch a ride with those who do.   But, I bet you are wondering, how do you even go about getting a hike? I thought I would show you by taking you on a virtual hike, from Omatjete to Omaruru! I can tell you are so excited; let’s go. First things first, you…

A Letter to My Pre-Namibian Self

Posted by WTTech in Namibia

WorldTeach alumna Elizabeth has some words of wisdom for her pre-WorldTeach self.     Dear Pre-Namibia Elizabeth,   I see you, packing your bags, saying goodbyes, freaking out, and above all, wondering just what this year will bring. Having just lived through it, I thought I would send you off with a few words of advice: First off, big bugs will dive bomb you while you lay in bed and read by the glowing light of your kindle. Try not to take it personally.   Your first few weeks at site will be your hardest, and you will question everything – your desire to come, you abilities, your ambition, your sanity. Push through. It will get easier and you will…

A Girls’ Club in Namibia

Posted by WTTech in Namibia

WorldTeach volunteer Jordon has created a girls’ club to help some of her students learn more about women’s issues in Namibia.   Finally, after many trials, tribulations, delays, and some lack of interest I finally had my first official girls’ club meeting, with not just one additional teacher helping me but two.   I really wanted to get this club going because the kinds of issues I hope to tackle in the girls club have always been issues close to my heart; things I have struggled with in my own life. I have found these issues, such as self-esteem and feeling empowered to be huge problems not only in Aroab, but in Namibia as a whole. Namibia errs on the…

Meet Taa

Posted by WTTech in Namibia

WorldTeach Namibia volunteer Elizabeth profiles one of her young learners:  Meet Taausuverue, another one of my sweet grade 5 girls with a completely unpronounceable first name. I know her simply as Taa. My first week at school, Taa showed up at the library and stood quietly beside my desk, smiling shyly at me every so often. I asked her how she was and what she did over the holiday, but she just gave me soft, one-word answers and then just stand there silently, watching me as I worked. Every day, though, she would come to the library and stand by my desk. I continued to ask her questions and, eventually, her answers became longer and more detailed. Now, Taa is…

New Technology in Namibia

Posted by WTTech in Namibia

WorldTeach volunteer Patrick Donovan introduces simple technology and opens up endless possibilities for his learners in Namibia. Over the August holiday, I got my hands on a cool technology put together by a colleague, Joris Komen, who I met during my struggle to get information about the state of education technology in Namibia. Joris is working with a team of talented hardware and software folks who more or less hacked a wireless router so that it could transmit the content of a USB stick (also specially formatted for this purpose) to up to/over 40 wifi-enabled devices at once.  So you need no internet whatsoever. You simply turn on this little router (about the size of a smart phone, which is…

Context

Posted by WTTech in Namibia

WorldTeach Namibia volunteer, Brian Park sets the stage for the yearlong Namibia program.    Picture the continent of Africa in your head.   Picture the bottom tip of Africa, and right to the northwest of the tip (South Africa), there is Namibia.   Namibia is a diverse, yet sparsely populated country, where each of the regions has a distinct geography and tribal majority. For example, in the central-western portion of Namibia, the people are predominantly Herero and Damara, and the landscape is rocky and mountainous desert that gives way to sand dunes at the coast. In the northeast, we have the Caprivi, who live on a lush and tropical strip of land that lines the Caprivi river. And then, in…

New Neighbors in Namibia

Posted by WTTech in Namibia

WorldTeach volunteer Kate Piniewski talks about living in very close quarters with her learners in Namibia.   My 56 Grade 10 learners moved into school on Monday. In less than three weeks they will take their national exams, determining their eligibility to continue with their education through Grade 12. So in order to ensure proper study habits, a (medium) well-balanced diet, and a stronger sense of camaraderie—or misery, depending which learner you ask—they have packed their bags, tents, pencils, and calculators and become my neighbors for the next seven weeks. As one learner so gently put it, “Miss, you are our first parent now. We spend more hours a day with you than with our parents. They must come second.”…

How a Year in Namibia Influenced a Lifetime Career

Posted by WTTech in Namibia

Wendi Haugh’s year as a WorldTeach volunteer in Namibia helped her define her future career. Here, she shares her experience abroad and discusses how her research in Namibia led to her career in academia, and the eventual release of her recently published book. I served as an English resource teacher at Mariabronn Primary School outside Grootfontein in central Namibia in 1992, over twenty years ago now.  The school was home to about three hundred girls and boys.  My primary job – besides working with the teachers to improve their English – was to develop activities which would allow the students to practice their English outside the classroom.  Lacking any other organized programs once school was out, they seized these opportunities…

Meet the Students! WorldTeach Volunteer introduces some of her students.

Posted by WorldTeach in Namibia

WorldTeach Volunteer Elizabeth Skurdahl introduces us to a few of her students with her Learner Profiles. Read more to meet some of the students from WorldTeach Namibia… Double the pleasure, double the fun! That’s right, you lucky devils, today I bring you not one but TWO learner profiles in one, epic DOUBLE LEARNER PROFILE POST!! (Please, please! Hold your applause. Seriously, guys – stop, I’m blushing!) Today I would like to introduce you to Brucely and Mbaunguraiye (pronounced Bow-n-gur-ay-ye), two cool kids direct from my grade 6 English class. Brucely   Brucely is a total jokester. He has a wide, charming smile that will disarm even the sternest of foes, and the antics and hijinks he gets up to constantly…