Ondangwa – The U.S. Government funded Determined, Resilient, Empowered, AIDS free, Mentored and Safe (DREAMS) program handed over 100 tablets to the Regional Director of Education in the Oshikoto Region on December 9, 2022. The tablets are earmarked for 100 students who are DREAMS participants from various schools in the Oshikoto Region.
This donation comes at a time when the Directorate of Education, Arts, and Culture has introduced online study materials for students to support independent learning, reinforce capacity to do research, and promote critical thinking. The donation of tablets will enable students to access virtual platforms and online content relevant to their studies.
Incomplete secondary education and poor school performance, particularly in English, science, technology, and math subjects, are some of the stumbling blocks preventing students, particularly adolescent girls and young women (AGYW) from accessing Vocational Education and Training, leading to economic disparity and gender inequality which propel the spread of HIV infection. The DREAMS program supports adolescent girls and young women who are vulnerable to school dropout and HIV infection, to stay in school, improve school performance, and graduate.
Speaking at the official ceremony held at Hans Daniel Secondary School, the Minister of Information, Communication and Technology, Hon. Peya Mushelenga, underscored the value of ensuring that young women complete their studies.
“With Namibia set to embark on multi-million-dollar projects in oil, gas, and green hydrogen, there is a need to further strengthen efforts aimed at providing equitable, quality education to women and girls so that they too can be empowered to be at the forefront of these major developments and ultimately lead independent lives,” he remarked.
Namibia has a generalized HIV epidemic with one of the highest prevalence rates in the world. Women bear a disproportionate burden of the virus among adults. DREAMS is an HIV prevention program focused on AGYW with the aim to keep girls and young women HIV-free and empower them socially as well as economically. DREAMS is funded by the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented by Project HOPE Namibia.