Ngambui Riruako – English Slam Poetry

Ngambui Riruako

Ngambui Riruako

Read what Ngambui Riruako created in her English class with Mrs. Hedtrich.
This gifted young lady put into words what is very hard to grasp for the average person.
Amazing!

My Fellow students, if you could spare me a few minutes of your life, I promise I will try my best not to waste any of your time.

I want to bring up a very important topic, a big problem that we have in our world that has become so deadly so toxic

A problem born into this atmosphere, taking lives and breeding fear.
I’m not going to tell you about something you don’t already know because I know you properly already thought about it in the back of your mind or felt it deep within your soul.

This problem that I am taking about is the cause of all wars, root of poverty and is killing this earth.
My fellow students I am not talking about a deadly disease or one person’s greed.

I am talking about us, the people, we the human race we are the problem.
Allow me to take you back to the time we rose to the top of the food chain.
Breaking the laws of nature, stopping our course of adaptation and natural selection and instead forced our environment to change and adapt for us to aid to our own personal needs.

Turning our fields of grass and greenery into busy dirty streets, a jungle made out of concrete.
Not giving a thought or a care of what we destroyed and killed along the way. With the motto do now and deal with the consequences later.

Tik tok knock knock loud bang – times up! And later is impatiently standing at your front door.
Yet, we still haven’t solved yesterdays problems, we’re ignoring todays but yet still promising to fix tomorrows problems?! Have we really gone that insane?

My tummy turns, I’m feeling nauseous, I’m feeling scared because all I see is humans but can’t seem to find humanity anywhere.

My tummy aches, turns in disgust, my mind not believing the scum that we have become.

For though we preach and seek peace, we use guns and spill blood. I am young and so might be naïve. So can somebody explain to me how one fights for peace? For love? For Harmony?

We stand against corruption and poverty. But wasn’t it just week that you through that loaf of bread into the rubbish bin?

GOD how we only contradict ourselves!
Drowning in confusion, only now realizing the world we are living in is a mare illusion built on lies and slowly decaying in all this pollution.
In panic and fear we look for the culprit, the ones to blame. But forgetting to start with the man or women staring back at you in that mirror.
But in all this darkness there is still some light. For there are those who see the truth , those you have seen through the lies.

Those who do not point fingers but instead use the choices of using their voices. Speaking and standing up. To be heard loud and not be muted. Refusing to let their thoughts and minds be polluted.

I say let the younger generation rise up and start a revolution and stop using parting as a damn solution. I see these people and I see hope for humanity. Not just a lost cause or another tragedy. And I hope this curse shall be lifted, that this world not end in pieces but instead finds a solution to the problem that is us. The virus we have become the sickness to this earth.

I want to thank you for your attention and as I have mentioned before I hope I haven’t wasted any of your time. I just wanted to bring up this very important topic. Hoping that after this you would finally take notice of it.”

YouThinkGreen at the Official Launch of EcoKids Namibia

On the 31st of Otober 2013 two of the Youthinkgreen Members  were graced with the opportunity to witness the Official Launch of EcoKids Namibia at the Hilton Hotel in Windhoek.

Mr. Mvula Ya Nangolo and Ms Virginia Witts unveil the EcoKids logo

Mr. Mvula Ya Nangolo and Ms Virginia Witts unveil the EcoKids logo

The Namibia Film Commission (NFC) along with the Ministry of Information, Communications and Technology (ICT) funded the programme with the aim to empower the youth to be media literate through short films of the Namibian environment. In that way creating a vibrant media industry resulting in the youth of Namibia bursting with National pride.

NFC thought of no other to implement this project than the person most known for creating media opportunities for children, Ms. Virginia Witts of Clever Clogs Productions (Pty Ltd). Featured in this programme will be a website offering filming tips, games, activities, links to other sites,”How to make a film” training and much more. Also, children will be encouraged to enter film making competitions where they can  make films of 6-10 seconds long with any mobile device at home about their surrounding environment issues and or solutions to these issues. During a two day annual “EcoKids Film Fest” the children will be encouraged to enter their films and the entries will win prizes. During the day, workshops will be held on different aspects of filmmaking and environmental issues.

EcoKids will motivate excitement about the film’s potential so that they can “show and tell” through Transmedia. The programme wants to inspire life-long environmental guardians cultivating National pride and create unity within diversity.

Tracy and Petelina with Ms Virginia-Witts

Tracy and Petelina with Ms Virginia-Witts

The programme was officially launched by the Special Advisor to the ICT Minister Mr. Mvula Ya Nangolo on behalf of the Honourable Joel Kaapanda and together with Virginia Witts they unveiled the EcoKids logo.

Two YTG members were privileged to be amongst the invited few such as members of the  UN, UNESCO, UNICEF, NGOs, NFC, Media Institutes, Corporations, the private business sector and other concerned individuals.

The two YTG members later had the opportunity to interact with the invited guests who were intrigued by our initiative and work.

Report by: Petelina Frans and Tracy Hoxobes

Alexander and Beatrice cycle to Swakopmund in their holidays…

Cycle to Swakopmund? You must be crazy! You won’t make it! Is it safe?
When I first proposed the idea to my parents and friends, these were the statements that followed.

Alex and Beatrice about to start their journey...

Alex and Beatrice about to start their journey...

The school holidays had just started and I wasn’t sure what to do with my first week off, so I thought why not cycle to Swakopmund? It’s good for me as well as good for the environment, no pollution at all. Also once the comments were posed that I wouldn’t make it or that it wasn’t safe and then I had to do it. I also was sure I could do it since I cycle enough through Windhoek, but I thought a challenge would be just the thing I needed.

So I intended to cycle the 365km to Swakopmund in 3 days (19th-21st August 2013) as to take it in a more relaxed way since my sister would be joining me. We prepared ourselves, me packing my saddlebag which I had won a couple of weeks prior and organizing luminescent vests.

On Monday the 19th of August at 6:45am we left Windhoek and made our way to our first stop; the Buschhotel situated 50km outside of Okahandja. The cycling was easy for the first 16km, riding in the yellow line zone of the highway, leading out of Windhoek, after the highway ended it became somewhat more difficult, with cars and lorries passing us with what felt like just a few centimeters to spare. The drivers were very considerate though and always tried to give us as much space as possible and so we had no problems what so ever. The only real obstacle we encountered was a head wind from the North-East, this meant progress was slow and we were quite exhausted by the time we reached Okahandja at around 11:45, thus we averaged about 15km/h with a couple of breaks here and there. Food we bought at shops, making sure that there would be as little plastic packaging as possible.
Having made good time we thought that the next 50km that day would be easy, boy were we wrong. The terrain changed to mountains and long hills. As it is with hills it’s nice to cycle down them but one first has to cycle up them as well. This was my sister’s downfall and thus many a break was taken. After a painful 4hours we made it to our first overnight stop, by this time we were both exhausted and after being allocated a room we went straight to sleep.
We had discussed if it were better to camp, but having to take sleeping bags and tents along would have been quite a schlep and would have weighed us down. Thus we had chosen to stay at Bed & Breakfasts, dinner we would either have at the B&B’s restaurant or organize ourselves.

The next day it was clear that my sister was not up for the cycle as she was not well and it wouldn’t be possible to continue. So it was I who continued on the venture of cycling; on that day only to Usakos, a mere 90km from the Buschhotel.  Since I knew that it wasn’t going to be a tough or long ride today, mainly because we had planned to be more tired from the previous day’s ride, I only left at 9am. It was a pleasant ride, mostly downhill for long parts, but with a slight head wind not making it that easy. It was nice though that there was a broad yellow line zone again, so I didn’t disturb the drivers on the road and this meant I didn’t have to concentrate too much on the road and could appreciate nature in its finest. There were loads of Warthogs next to the road which surprisingly didn’t budge at passing cars but as soon as a bicycle passed they fled for the hills. I put this down to the fact that they don’t get to see bicycles very much and this new ‘thing’ scared them. Also to be seen were several Giraffes and the odd small buck. It was also nice to greet people at the side of the road and if they greeted back and were friendly. I took some time to talk to them and explain what I was doing and since I was wearing my YTG shirt explained what the organization is and does. They thought what I was doing was to a small part crazy and dangerous but to a large part great and worthy.
Since it was such a short ride I was there by 1 o’clock and had the rest of the day to sleep and relax. I stayed at JODO B&B which was very nice and very easy to locate, which is important when arriving quite tired and not wanting to have to concentrate. I planned to leave early the next Morning so I sorted out my breakfast, refilled all my water bottles and then went to bed.

When I say quite early I’m stretching the truth a bit, since it was at 4:30am that I was already on my bike and ready to leave. It was a full moon and so it was very easy to see and thanks to my lights and luminescent jacket I was easily spotted by the night driving lorries and cars, of which there are actually quite a few. Straight outside Usakos there is a long slow hill that feels like a mountain and stretches for about 25km and so the early morning chill was very inviting as I ascended. By the time the sun came up I was at already past the top of the mountain and could see the Spitzkoppe clearly to my right side. I could already make out the top of the Rössing Mountain, which was covered in fog, since I was nearing the coast. The sight of fog both made me happy and scared, because it meant no wind, but on the other hand it also meant that it would be harder for cars to see me. From Usakos to Swakopmund it is 150km and no broad yellow line zone so it was harder to cycle with the passing traffic. By the time I reached the Rössing Mountain the fog had cleared which in turn meant that there was quite a strong wind coming from the west, yes exactly the direction I was traveling towards. Thus even when the ground started to slant more downwards to get to sea level, I couldn’t simply roll down, but really had to peddle hard in order not to be blown backwards, thus my speed was heavily reduced, but at 11:30, exhausted, I arrived in Swakopmund.

That's a happy YouThinkGreen ambassador in Swakopmund ;-)

That's a happy YouThinkGreen ambassador in Swakopmund 😉

It felt great to have accomplished this feat and was quite proud of myself for having achieved my goal and shown that it is possible to cycle quite easily to Swakopmund and that it has nothing to do with being crazy, it has a great deal more to do with staying power and mental and physical endurance.

Alexander Brock

 

First Bike Mob in Windhoek

Bike Mobs flyer

Bike Mobs flyer

On Sunday, 21 July, at 14:00 the first Bike Mob started in front of the Hilton Hotel in Windhoek. The name ‘Bike Mobs’ invites the participants to come and cycle in their Sunday best.
The ride was organised on short notice by Laban Naftal from the Physical Active Youth and Michael Linke from the Bicycle Empowerment Namibia (BEN).
Alexander Brock and Carsten Antoni with his family joined the ride on behalf of YouThinkGreen Namibia.
The purpose of the Bike Mobs is to show the citizens of Windhoek that it is very possible to use the bicycle as a means of transport in the city.

The Bike Mob's just about to start...

The Bike Mob's just about to start...

On this lovely Sunday afternoon 18 enthusiastic riders cycled from Ausspannplatz along Independence Avenue to Katutura. On the way passing many surprised pedestrians who couldn’t believe their eyes.

Grace on the back of her dad.

Grace on the back of her dad.

The group was made of cyclists of all ages and genders. The youngest participant was Grace Antoni, who came along in a backpack on the back of her father.

At the end Alexander Brock and Carsten Antoni won a Knog pannier bag worth N$1,100 for their best Sunday’s cycling outfit. A big thanks to Bicycles for Humanity Melbourne for the prize 😉

If you would like to join one of the next Bike Mobs, but you don’t have a bike, please look up the bicycle shops of BEN Namibia on the map below and give them a visit for an affordable second hand bike.

Hope to see you at the next Bike Mob.


View Bicycling Empowerment Network Namibia in a larger map

Stand-up Comedian Mark Sampson visited DHPS to interact with YouThinkGreen

Don't Be A Waster! YTG students with the Sampson family.

Don't Be A Waster! YTG students with the Sampson family.

Africa Clockwise  is a phrase that everyone should learn to know and respect. On the 17th of July, we, the members of Youthinkgreen-Namibia, had the pleasure to meet up with well-known South African comedian Mark Sampson, his family and their very large green (in ecology and color) truck. These intrepid explorers are on their way around Africa using only alternative fuel and by doing so are on their way to a new world record.  Their trip should last two years: one year traveling up the west side of Africa and then one year traveling down along the eastern side.
In front of our school hall the green colossus loomed, casting its shadow on the Youthinkgreen-Namibia group, all of whom were eager to listen to Mark and his family. Mark and family immediately jumped in and started describing their plans and what exactly made their truck so environmentally friendly.
Firstly, as mentioned, they are doing it to break a world record, but secondly and more importantly to show the world that it is possible to travel by alternative means and to prove that Africa can show the world how to cope with climate change. On another note they wish to discover whether it is possible, in this century, for a kid to live happily without a TV or water on tap.
They were keen to talk about the workings of the Big Green Truck, which once had been a Mercedes 911 bullnose gun-tractor, pulling heavy artillery weaponry through Angola. Mark mentioned that when they had bought the truck two years ago it still had had a gun turret attached to it, which with the renovations had been exchanged for beds for the children. Of course these weren’t the only changes. The interior has been completely redesigned and is now a comfortable “small home”, fully equipped to function as kitchen, lounge, bathroom and/or bedroom.

The main conversion happened with the motor though, transforming the old diesel motor into a motor that runs on waste vegetable oil, from fish and chip shops for instance. The family told us that they had received old cooking oil from Joe’s Beerhouse here in Namibia, which we thoroughly support and admire. Yet the oil, which in Namibia would have gone straight into the landfill and thus be no use to anybody, has to be processed before it is capable of powering the Big Green Truck.
Once every top up of oil, the family has to spend a good few hours filtering the oil so that all impurities are gone thus not harming the engine. Firstly the oil is filtered through baskets lined with the same type of cloth used in making cheese; the oil is then pumped through numerous string filters. The oil is then filled into barrels and stored on the roof or in the mighty fuel tanks of the truck; making it possible, to our great admiration, for the truck to drive from Cape Town all the way to Windhoek without having to obtain more oil.
Their electricity is generated with photovoltaic solar panels, which of course is the logical and sensible source when traveling around Africa.
The Sampson family then showed us the sign they use when they see people distinctly doing something environmentally unfriendly; which is by using ones three middle fingers and pointing them upwards one forms a “W” which stands for the word “waster”. This sign one can casually show an offending person and leave them feeling flummoxed, but with a sense of shame.

Youthinkgreen Namibia is incredibly honored to have had the chance to get to know this inspiring family and their Big Green Truck and wishes them a safe and fulfilling onward journey.

For more information visit the Africa Clockwise website and have a look at their Facebook page.

You also find a short report about the visit on The Republikein’s website.

Interview on ‘Good Morning, Namibia’ @NBC

Jennifer, anxious to go on Air.

Jennifer, anxious to go on Air.

On Tuesday, 16 July 2013, Jennifer Eises and Carsten Antoni, as part of the YouThinkGreen Namibia team, were invited to NBC Namibia for an interview on the television show ‘Good Morning, Namibia‘.

The show is broadcasted live and starts early in the morning. Our interview was at 7 am, about the same time as every student at DHPS started the first lesson;-)

It was an awesome experience and lots of fun. The producers must have thought the same, because afterwards they invited us to come back for follow ups or whenever we need media coverage for an event related to the project. Isn’t that awesome?!

Thank you very much, NBC. We’ll definitely make use of this invitation.

In the YouTube video you can watch a section of the interview.
We talk about our local projects and spreading awareness for the current situation in Windhoek.

You find a few more shots taken in the studio at NBC in the gallery below.