Education is the key that can unlock the development potential of our nation. To this end, it is with pride that I see the passion and commitment shown by Bannerman Resources towards developing both the mineral resources of Namibia and our human capital.
I learned of this passion only recently, when I met representatives from Bannerman Resources during a trip to Swakopmund last year. Not only did they listen to my appeal for more involvement from the private sector in meeting Namibia’s education challenges, but they came to me soon after with a proposal on how Bannerman and its staff could touch the lives of underprivileged school children throughout the Erongo Region. With crucial assistance from my Ministry, the Bannerman Learner Assistance Scheme was born.
One of the greatest gifts you can give a person is the lifelong value of education. This is well understood by the staff at Bannerman Resources, who personally travelled the width and breath of the Erongo Region to deliver school uniforms and speeches of encouragement to the 22 schools selected to receive the Learner Assistance Scheme.
I commend Bannerman Resources for demonstrating that the challenge of improving standards of education in Namibia can be taken up, even in a small way and by the private sector.
Yours In Education
Dr. A. Iyambo
Bannerman Resources is one of the leading exploration companies in Namibia with a vision to create a globally significant and responsible uranium producer. Equally, it is committed to supporting the Namibian Government in achieving its national development goals. Bannerman Resources believes in investing in education, training and ongoing development of persons within its community.
Earlier this year, the company launched its Learner Assistance Scheme in the Erongo Region. Ephraim Pekema, Financial Controller of Bannerman Resources, put forward an idea to support less fortunate school children in the Erongo Region. In collaboration with the Ministry of Education, specific schools and children were identified who needed school uniforms, shoes and payment of outstanding school fees. A total of 320 children from 22 schools in the Erongo region received support. The Minister of Education, Dr. Abraham Iyambo assisted Bannerman employees with the distribution of the clothes and shoes.
Children from Ozondati Primary School receiving School clothes from Bannerman Resources employee, Joel Iyambo. Bannerman recently donated school uniforms, shoes and support to 22 schools in the Erongo Region.
Bannerman Resources prides itself on the education and self-improvement possibilities it provides to its employees through its Bursary Scheme. Two-thirds of Bannerman’s Geologists have completed post-graduate studies through the assistance and support of the company. Bannerman is currently assisting 5 employees studying part-time towards furthering their careers and assisting 2 employees in completing their Grade 12 studies. When Helena Kashamako a 4th year medical student, approached the Chamber of Mines for assistance in completing her MB ChB degree at the University of Pretoria, Bannerman Resources invested in this venture. Dr. Kashamako graduated in medicine at the end of 2010 and is now back in Namibia working in a Windhoek hospital.
Bannerman Resources Project Geologist, Joel Iyambo receiving his Honours Award after completing his degree at WITS University in South Africa through the Bannerman Bursary Scheme
Dr Helena Kashamako (far right), graduated in medicine in 2010 at the University of Pretoria, through the assistance of the Bannerman Resources bursary scheme. She is pictured above attending the 2011 Bannerman Resources Stakeholders’ Function with Dr Wotan Swiegers, Director of the Uranium Institute, Andrea Dreyer and Ailly Namupala (far left). Dr Swiegers has mentored Dr Kashamako and supported her application for a Bannerman bursary.
Bannerman Resources Field Assistants Isak Kapofi and Friedrich Hanavi currently studying through Namcol for their Grade 12 made possible by the Bannerman Bursary Scheme. Bannerman Resources believes that it is essential to assist employees’ through-out the company to accomplish their self-improvement goals.
In addition to the bursaries and school sponsorships, the company also supported school activities within its operating community. One example was a joint sponsorship by Bannerman and Swakopmund Toastmasters Club of the Erongo Youth Expo School Debate, held at Swakopmund Secondary School. Participants were from Duneside High School, Westside High School, Namib High School, Walvis Bay High School and Swakopmund Secondary School.
The debate topics were (1) Mining in the Erongo is beneficial for Namibia, (2) Ocean management is a valuable use of Namibia’s budget and resources, (3) outcomes based Education will assist Namibia to attain the vision 2030 goal of being a knowledge economy and (4) the unemployment rate in Namibia is easily solvable.
The top four teams received prizes in the form of book vouchers for the school library courtesy of Bannerman Resources.
Bannerman Resources General Manager, Brandon Munro took a keen personal interest in supporting Swakopmund Toastmasters Club. In his quest to assist the club he introduced the Toastmasters concept to the mining industry and secured a venue free of charge for the Toastmasters club (Europahof Hotel, Swakopmund). In the last year Bannerman has subsidised a number of Swakopmunders to assist them to join the local Toastmasters Club, which made the financial burden less for those who expressed interested in the valuable training that the club provides on a regular basis.
Toastmasters International is a world leader in communication and leadership development. The organisation that was established in 1924 and is still going strong because of the unique skills it provides its members with. One gets to learn and polish their public speaking and leadership skills in a friendly atmosphere, which helps foster self-confidence and personal growth.
Membership in Toastmasters is one of the greatest investments young people can make in themselves and one of the most cost-effective skill-building tools available anywhere.
As Bannerman Resources continues to grow, the company is looking forward to even greater investment in the community and Namibia as a whole.