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Bank Windhoek’s visiting on-site clinic recently hosted employees for a two-day second Respiratory Health Clinic in Windhoek. Combined with a Breathe Easier THan bEfore campaign, the clinic conducted free lung function tests and a Smoking Cessation Programme.

Situated at the Bank’s Human Capital Department, the on-site clinic collaborated with Lindsay Zurba, a respiratory healthcare specialist who encouraged and educated employees, including those of Bank Windhoek’s holdings company Capricorn Group, on the benefits of a healthy respiratory system and how to quit smoking and its health benefits.

Employees welcomed the initiative, as the clinic was fully booked. Those with chronic symptoms such as coughing, shortness of breath, a tight chest and wheezing were invited to make use of this opportunity to get advice and support on any respiratory related health matter. “Breathing well-being related difficulties such as asthma, allergic rhinitis, emphysema and chronic bronchitis, were examined during the campaign,” said Bank Windhoek’s Corporate Wellness Consultant, Marjolize Scholtz.

Zurba has over 20 years’ experience in the area of respiratory healthcare, including degree level modules in Asthma, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), Smoking Cessation and Spirometry. She is also a certified Asthma Educator and teaches for the National Asthma Education Programme. She has taught Spirometry, which measures airflow, throughout Africa for the past 19 years.

“A spirometry test requires an individual to breathe into a mouthpiece that is connected to an instrument called a spirometer. By measuring how much air is exhaled and how quickly the individual exhales, spirometry can then evaluate a broad range of lung diseases,” said Zurba.

Stop smoking

Bank Windhoek’s Business Efficiency Improvement Officer, Barend Van der Walt, who recently quit smoking after 20 years, said: “After I lost both of my parents to cancer, coupled with high blood pressure and the constant coughing, I decided to stop smoking. There is so much to gain and absolutely nothing to lose. I feel so much more energetic, food tastes better, it is easier to fall asleep and my concentration at work has improved tremendously.”

Van der Walt encouraged other smokers to consider quitting before it is too late. “It is not easy to quit, but once you do, it feels great,” he said.

Van der Walt shared a few tips below:

  • When feeling the urge to smoke, drink a glass of cold water.
  • Start exercising, this helps to take your mind of smoking and will help improve the quality of sleep.
  • Try relaxation exercises when feeling anxious, depressed or irritated.
  • Reward yourself with the money you save.

Scholtz concluded that Bank Windhoek’s visiting on-site clinic is mandated to ensure that employee’s wellbeing is taken care of; cementing Capricorn Group as an employer of choice by providing a much-needed offering as part of its employee experience.

On Friday, 12 April 2019 Capricorn Group extended their legacy as connectors of positive change by launching the Capricorn Group Schools Netball League, previously known as the Bank Windhoek Schools Netball Super League at the United netball courts.

Over the years this netball legacy was built through a longstanding partnership between schools’ netball and Bank Windhoek, in the form of the Bank Windhoek Schools Netball Super League. This year though, Capricorn Group decided to use the opportunity to showcase the affiliation between the Group and Bank Windhoek, the flagship brand of Capricorn Group, and thus so further solidifying the entire Group as a Connector of Positive Change.

This netball league carries the official endorsement of the Namibia Schools Sport Union (NSSU) and is regarded as the official national league for netball in Namibia. Mrs Marlize Horn, Group Executive: Brand & Corporate Affairs from Capricorn Group, emphasised the group’s stance on developing and supporting sport in Namibia.

“Our focus as Capricorn Group is on creating sustainable opportunities in the regions and communities within which we operate. This includes the development of youth for the future of the countries in which we operate, and sport is a powerful mechanism to achieve this,” Mrs Horn said.

Also present at the launch was long-serving Namibia Schools Sports Union (NSSU) national coordinator, Mr Solly Duiker, as well as other team representatives from NSSU. Mr Duiker thanked Capricorn Group for its contribution to school sports development and was especially pleased with the sponsorship towards women’s sports. In previous years, the Bank Windhoek Schools Netball Super League was separate from the National League. This year though, a change was deemed fit to accommodate more options, including more age groups. Mr Duiker confirmed the NSSU’s endorsement of the shift from Super League to National League. The league will now include U/12, U/13, U/14, U/15, U/17 and First Teams.

Liezel Garbers, chairperson of the previously known Bank Windhoek Schools Netball Super League and now the Capricorn Group Schools Netball League said, “We want to extend our sincerest gratitude towards Marlize Horn and the Capricorn Group for the generous sponsorship. Thank you for realizing the importance of netball in the lives of many young girls in Namibia and the role sport plays in the lives of young people to help build character. ” She also thanked Mr Solly Duiker for his support.

A total of 17 schools, consisting out of 58 teams ranging from age groups U/12 to U/19 has entered for the league games which will start on 24 May and end on 24 July with the National Finals. A total of 215 matches will be played in various towns including Walvis Bay, Tsumeb,

Otjiwarongo, Stampriet, Outjo, Gobabis and Windhoek. The winning team will be crowned the National Champion and will receive a trophy, while medals will be given to all age groups.

This year, the academy will be hosting Twenty-Five (25) students from five high schools in the Khomas region. The schools are Chairman Mao Zedong Secondary School, Concordia College, Delta Secondary School, Hage Geingob Secondary School and Windhoek High School.

The following are the 25 students for the 2019 academy: Chairman Mao Zedong Secondary School – Adeleke Kaloia (17 years old), Ailly Nuuyoma (16 years old), Joakina Endunde (16 years old), Raymond Semango (16 years old) and Silva Lopes (17 years old). Concordia College – Hans Mwiiyale (16 years old), Cristo Eduardo (16 years old), Eva-Rakel Johannes (16 years old), Ileni Ngenomesho (16 years old), Jonathan van der Westhuizen (16 years old) and Unovandu Tjavara (16 years old). Delta Secondary School – Ama Geingos (16 years old), Jemimah Ndebele (16 years old), Patji Tjiroze (16 years old) and Tanyaradzwa Master (15 years old). Hage Geingob Secondary School – Amukoshi Festus (16 years old), Hilde Haipinge (16 years old), Junias Frans (16 years old), Victoria Mathias (16 years old) & Tuyeni Akwaake (16 years old). Windhoek High School – Christine Mukumbi (16 years old), Jana Hein (16 years old), Nadia Horn (16 years old), Richard von Schultz (16 years old) and Suzie van Zyl (16 years old).

In an effort to build capacity to eventually take the academy to all regions of the country, the 2019 selection will still only consist of schools from Windhoek, albeit on a larger scale. The intake was increased by 56% and an additional two schools were added to 2019’s academy.

As with the inaugural selection, the assistance of the school Principals and Life Skills teachers was instrumental. 25 participants were selected from over 60 applicants from the five schools. The selected students went through a rigorous selection process in which each of them had to write a motivation letter to the selection committee describing why they wanted to take part in the academy. They also had to provide an endorsement letter from their school Life Skills teacher supporting their application, and attend a one-onone interview with the programme coordinators as part of the final selection process.

Speaking at the event, the Director of Education for Khomas Region, Mr. Gerard Vries, reminded the students that what they take out of the programme is based on the choices they make now and during the Afrox Leadership Academy. He further commended Afrox Namibia for their very different contribution made towards developing young leadership. Mr Vries likened the programme to one of social change, saying “The Afrox Leadership Academy is an important contribution towards the project of social change and in mentoring not just young leaders but also altering thinking systems and better equipping learners to make informed decisions essential for future success”.

The academy programme will cover a broad range of topics such as; purpose, decision making, career guidance, basic etiquette, project management, presentation skills and many more subjects which will fit various interests, while still providing a solid foundation on the principles of leadership and self-governance. The sessions will be a mixture of lectures, professional one-on-one mentorship, site visits and community service. The academy will cover a period of six months with a one week Leadership Training course which will provide opportunities for further interaction and teamwork.

It is well documented that building leadership at a young age, encourages responsibility, develops a positive mind set, and organisational skills, which eventually allows the learner to become a more responsible and engaged citizen. “Instead of only granting bursaries, which we believe is very necessary, we opted to develop a skill that at present is mastered too late in life”, says Mr. Eckhardt Vorster, Managing Director of Afrox Namibia. “We designed a programme that would help young people realise a new world of possibilities and provide them with the tools they need to achieve their dreams”, Mr. Vorster added.

Standard Bank Namibia has awarded bursaries to four students from the Namibia University of Science and Technology; the University of the Free State and Stellenbosch University.

The beneficiaries are Muningandu Tjingaete and Petros Kambinda, who are second and third year cyber security students at NUST; Namalwa Amakali who is a second year Bachelor’s in Forensic Science student at the University of the Free State; as well as Lara Bartholomae, a first year actuarial science student at Stellenbosch University.

A statement issued by the bank’s Head of Marketing, Communications and Corporate Social Investment, Magreth Mengo said their bursary programme is geared towards training Namibia’s future leaders who would otherwise not have had the opportunity to realise their potential.

“Our bursary programme is designed in a way that it gives academically gifted students from all backgrounds the opportunity to study at any regional university of their choice so that they can help contribute to the growth of our country and economy,” she said.

Also speaking during the handing over ceremony was the bank’s Head of Human Resources, Isdor Angula, who said employment at the ‘blue bank’ is almost guaranteed for the bursary recipients.

“A number of previous recipients didn’t take advantage of the opportunity from Standard Bank and they redirected the funds from the bank to socialising and ended up failing. The bursary conditions are clear, you will forfeit the bursary if you fail,” Angula said.

The bursary scheme agreement includes tuition fees and all living expenses, including a monthly allowance, accommodation costs and four flights per year for students studying outside the country.

On Friday, 12 April 2019, the newly established Capricorn Group NeXtGen_Board supported our brand promise of being Connectors of Positive Change by sowing positively into the lives of young children at the Family of Hope School in Havana Katutura. The Board made up of 12 millennials, dedicated their Friday morning to upgrade the garden, plant new vegetables, and update and organise the toy library at the centre.

“I am proud of my NextGen Board members for this initiative,” said James Chapman, Chairperson of the NextGen board and CFO of Bank Windhoek. “We are convinced that initiatives such as these foster the well-being of our country and brings about positive change.

Because of this, we are aligned to invest, support and uplift the communities in which we operate. Thank you to the Family of Hope School for allowing us to become part of their community,” Chapman said.

The Family of Hope centre is a cornerstone in their community. The garden, being an integral part as it forms part of the feeding scheme of the centre, became a focal point for restorative work.

The vegetables grown in the garden are used to prepare meals for 260 children that come to the centre every weekday for a meal. For many that are their only meal for the day. The toys in the toy library are used by psychologists who come in weekly during their sessions with the children.

The children were thrilled to see their school transformed and gave a helping hand during the initiative, which was made possible through Imago Dei, a third-party service provider, modelling the future of aid coordination through establishing a relationship of trust between donors including Capricorn Group, and other welfare organisations.

“It was a privilege to be able to change the lives of others with such a small gesture. What touched me was the kids’ smiles when we got our hands dirty and worked together to improve the environment for them. I have a lot of respect for how they operate and use every opportunity to give back to the community.” Marizelle Pienaar, NeXtGen_Board member

The objective of the Capricorn Group NeXtGen_Board is to serve as a formal body where Millennials and Generation Z’s (GenZ’s) will engage with the Group’s Executive Management and give inputs that lead to creating an organisation for the future.

The newly established board proved that every helping hand can make a difference and that we are part of something much bigger than ourselves when we ignite positive change in the lives of our future leaders.

The group is indeed excited to see the future developments that these dozen millennials have up their sleeves.

Telecom Namibia launched its services in various parts of the Kavango West Region and at the same time unveiled a brand-new ultramodern store at Nkurenkuru on Thursday last week.

The services include Frequency Division (FD) LTE, and 4G technology at Nkurenkuru for both fixed and mobile access services while in Nankudu, the telecommunication company installed a multi-service access node (MSAN) also known as a multi-service access gateway.

Areas such as Rupara, Katwitwi, Mururani, Ngone, and Bunya also received 3g technology.

The company’s acting Chief Executive Officer, Calvin Muniswaswa said these upgrades and new installations will allow residents in the Kavango West region to have faster connectivity to the world; do easy mobile money transfers, online banking and have access to applications and social media.

The CEO said the new design of the shop is in line with Telecom Namibia’s broader plan of redesigning its outlets for an improved retail presentation of its products and services while introducing new technologies and solutions that will boost the country’s telecommunications sector.

Interactive and revolutionary, and featuring the latest in digital technology, the state-of-the-art outlet will change the way customers in Nkurenkuru and surrounding communities shop for telecom products and services said Muniswaswa.

In addition, the  also features cutting-edge mobile products and fixed broadband services aimed at enhancing the lives of customers and empowering individual communication needs as well as a customer care point where products and services can be purchased, reporting faults and where customers can apply for new services, as well as a billing centre for services payments.

Highlighting the Government’s commitment towards Information, Communication Technology (ICT).  Deputy Minister of Information and Communication Technology (MICT), Engel Nawatiseb said: “The Government recognises the strategic importance of ICT and the major role it plays in contributing to the social and economic development of our country and its citizens.

Nawatised said various achievements in the sector since 1992, with the establishment of Telecom Namibia, has demonstrated clearly the ongoing commitments and Government’s political will toward supporting the growth and development of the sector.

“Telecommunications impacts almost every aspect of our lives. It affects the way we do business, the way we grow our economy, the way we manage our time, the way we keep in touch with each other, and the way we build our collective human experiences. And Telecom Namibia’s aim to encourage the effective use and accessibility of ICT services and gadgets have to be commended,” the Deputy Minister said.

The business world has changed significantly since the internet went mainstream during the early 1990s and Namibia Wildlife Resorts has adapted to keep pace with these changes, NWR Managing Director Zelna Hengari has said.

A statement issued by NWR said the changes in the digital landscape have led to companies having to either adapt or fall behind.
“Five years ago, we repositioned ourselves and moved away from our previous methods of communicating and presenting our activities and establishments,” Hengari said.

She said NWR has redeveloped its website to make it more user friendly in addition to ensuring secure access on any device.

“With the increase in enquiries from the improvement of our website, we further incorporated an online booking and payment portal to ensure that our clients would not have to leave the site to finalise their booking and this has led to our clients having a seamless user experience on the platform,” Hengari said.

She further noted that with the emergence of the smartphone, there has been a significant shift from how clients interact with brands.

“A survey that appeared on IT News Africa stated that Namibia’s active mobile broadband subscribers increased from 1.5 million to 1.6 million people from June 2016 to June 2017. Namibia was ranked seventh on the African continent as having the fastest mobile internet,” she said.

“On average, we receive over 20 000 monthly visitors on our website, with the top five countries being Namibia, Germany, South Africa, Netherlands, and France.”