Ethical community activism: The case of Olupaka Combined School
In African cultures, the spirit of giving back to the community form the humanistic foundation of ethics and it is central in contemplating African morality. Ethics are intended to guide the conduct of people in society and therefore shape us to do what is right for the society not only by virtue of being good but also by being productive, which includes ploughing back into the societies we live in.
Successively, let us drink from the philosophical words of one of Africa’s foremost scholars, John Samuel Mbiti, that “I am because we are, since we are, therefore I am.” This narrative postulates the spirit of oneness and our interrelatedness guided by morality. Olupaka Generation Group has chosen a revolutionary path of reason and morality set by John Mbiti in carrying out their radical community activism in uplifting the community of Olupaka for we are because they are, and since we are therefore they are.
It was as though Mbiti had Olupaka Generation in his pan-Africanist mind that there shall live a group of activists to the sustenance of his words of lucid consciousness that we as Olupaka Generation continue to preach today. We say all this to narrate the following pan-Africanist story:
On the 2nd of October 2018, Olupaka Generation Group, a group of former learners of Olupaka Combined School in Eyanda village in Outapi Constituency registered their first annual visit at the school in order to officially hand over gifts worth N$5,420 to the school. The visit was also characterised by motivational speeches directed at the learners especially those in Grade 10, who started with their final JSC examinations recently.
Olupaka Generation Group managed to host three key motivational speakers, namely Lydia Aipinge, a senior education officer at NIED at Okahandja and a former learner at Olupaka, Antonius Kaleb, who is a radiographer at Outapi state hospital and also a former learner of Olupaka, and Onesmus Shoombe, a well-known motivational public speaker, who hails from Okahala village.
In the presence of the school principal of Olupaka CS, Sabina Kleopas, the school teachers, members of the school board, school learners and the parents who came to witness the donation of gifts during the event, Olupaka Generation members donated items such as food items, toiletries such as sanitary pads for learners, stationery and sports items for different sport codes.
Food items donated are intended mostly for Grade 10 learners who are camping at the school premises as a way to prepare themselves for final examinations, while stationery included items such as printing paper and mathematical sets which will be used by the school, and sports items included soccer balls, netballs and volleyballs and nets.
With the help of Ishitile “Chumera” Aloysius, a singer and a student of sports who has acquired various sports qualifications especially in volleyball, the group managed to re-introduce volleyball at school in order to upgrade sports at Olupaka CS.
The Olupaka Generation Group, through mobilisation and spirit of community activism, also managed to secure some donations of sports items from the ministry of youth and sport’s Outapi office. The motivational speakers were intended to instil courage and confidence in all school learners, especially with their education.
Speeches also touched on critical thinking, self-awareness, pan-Africanism and a range of contemporary social challenges affecting learners and the learning environment.
We at Olupaka Generation would like with much appreciation to register our thankfulness to the school principal, the respective teachers, members of the school board, school learners’ leadership and all the learners for their unwavering support of the event. We are contemplating ideas to host a reunion which would include influential figures in order to uplift the development of the school and the overall welfare of all the leaners of Olupaka CS.
Therefore we at Olupaka Generation would like to call upon all willing parties locally, regionally and nationally to come to the table and help us make our activities feasible. In our determination, we are planning to host events such as critical thinking for the benefit of learners’ critical consciousness at an early age. Other projects we would look into in future include a community library. Let us do the best to our former school in the spirit of unity, solidarity and pan-Africanism. Like Tate Mbiti said, “We are because they are and since we are, therefore they are”. We salute Olupaka Combined School!
• Kaapanda Shivute shaNandjila is Olupaka Generation Group coordinator who writes from Eyanda village.
New Era Reporter
2018-10-12 09:23:10 5 months ago