Roger Bullen elected new Chair of FRIENDS OF NAMIBIA
5 December 2011
Roger Bullen was elected as the new Chair of the FRIENDS OF NAMIBIA committee for the coming year at the 26 November AGM held at the High Commission. Much thanks and appreciation was expressed to Margaret Lipscomb for many years of excellent work and activity as outgoing chair.
School-building, clinics, culture, goats, social media and the 2012 Olympics were all on the agenda when the Friends of Namibia Society met recently. The group aims to coordinate interested UK parties building links and appreciation for Namibia and brings together non-governmental organizations, writers and historians, film-makers, schools, councils and others.
Highlights of 2011 raised at the Friends of Namibia meeting include:
- A book "A History of Namibia" by Marion Wallace, African curator at the British Library, and archaeologist John Kinahan, launched to great acclaim in London and Windhoek.
- Successful work by the Catherine Bullen Foundation who have completed the construction of a kitchen and covered seating area at Omuhaturua Primary School Hostel in Eastern Namibia, including pioneering a low-cost building method using sandbags covered with cement. The project continues to flourish and is extending to a school for disadvantaged Namibians at Eiseb. The fund launches "Give a Goat" appeal for Christmas and other times, to give San families goats to support themselves.
- Manchester Diocese supports the Anglican Diocese of Namibia, particularly its work with children affected by HIV/AIDS, where many households have lost both parents to the pandemic and churches and other organizations are helping them not to lose their own futures by helping them stay in school and find enough food.
- The ACS Cobham International School, Cobham, each year sends a large group of ACS students to Kutenhoas School, where they teach and also learn. The students do significant fundraising to purchase school equipment, and ship a container of library books and other supplies for the school.
- Chesterfield maintains links with Tsumeb, a town in northern Namibia. These links include support for a home for elderly people, a kindergarten and a Family Support Centre. Fund-raising activities are organized by schools, churches, clubs and societies.
- Some Leicester schools maintain educational links and exchange news and letters with students in Kamanjab.
Activities in 2012 will include speaker meetings on a range of development and other topics, support for Namibian books, music and film in UK, information for visitors and others interested in Namibia and work to support Namibia's teams at the Olympics and Paralympics teams.
ABOUT FRIENDS OF NAMIBIA: The Friends of Namibia Society was launched in November 1997. Membership includes former anti-apartheid campaigners who supported the country's liberation struggle and many who have come to know Namibia after independence including volunteers, teachers, academics, exchange visitors, tourists, and those with an interest in the country's natural beauties and animal life.
The society also provides a forum and coordinating body for various groups in the UK, such as a civic link between Chesterfield and Tsumeb, a school link with the ACS International School in Surrey, a diocesan link with Manchester and various smaller local parish links. The society is independent of any government or political party and seeks to cooperate and liaise with both individuals and organizations that have an interest in the welfare and future of Namibia.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: Contact the Chair, Roger Bullen, on firstname.lastname@example.org or tel +44 (0) 1206 383368