WINDHOEK- Phoenix project, an initiative by a UK-based Cardiff University, has since its inception conducted more than 38 individual projects in Namibia, valued at over N$20 million. The Phoenix project began in 2014 as a normal engagement project.
However, the scope of work grew so rapidly that Phoenix became a flagship project, at both Cardiff and University of Namibia (Unam).
The focus has since shifted from a mere academic cooperation to tackling Namibia’s national challenges such as health issues. Last week, Cardiff University’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Colin Riordan, made a courtesy visit to Namibia to consolidate the growing partnership and to meet his Unam counterpart, Vice Chancellor Kenneth Matengu. His visit also included courtesy calls to the Office of Unam Chancellor who is also the Namibian Vice President, Nangolo Mbumba, the Minister of Health and Social Services, Dr Kalumbi Shangula and the International Relations and Cooperation Minister, Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah. Matengu on Friday highlighted some of the most notable past successes of the project which include providing specialist training to doctors, nurses and midwives, and boosting mathematics knowledge among future scientists.
Others include supporting local languages, developing communities of software enthusiasts and saving lives following road accidents.
Equally, others involve boosting aspirations of young learners, improving study skills, boosting e-learning and improving human rights awareness.
The Phoenix project leader Judith Hall said the true value of the project, however, is best measured through the impact, which has been recognised at national level, and received praise by senior members of the Namibian government.
The project’s work now covers a broad range of more than 38 individual activities in Namibia.
Of these, some are relatively new. The new notable ones include the Great Green Wall of Namibia: combating desertification in Namibia through indigenous reforestation.
Others include the Phoenix students which is a force for good in Namibia through youth engagement, as well as the implementation of social science research to control the Hepatitis E outbreak in Namibia. The other is the introduction of the Electronic Patient Record System for Namibian hospitals. Research and teaching process review is another which aims to make Unam smarter to achieve better output for staff and students.
Other activity mentioned is the introduction of continuous professional development for doctors and nurses practicing in northern Namibia that will ensure the standards of care are of the highest quality for the people of Oshakati, Ongwediva and Onandjokwe. There is also the Cardiff Trauma Pack, which is manufactured in Namibia for saving lives on national roads. Grant writing training is another activity aimed at teaching academics how to attract international research grants.
Phoenix has also brought significant benefits to Wales, with Cardiff University staff and students, alongside professionals from other sectors, by making the most of learning and development opportunities. Phoenix collaborates closely with Unam on a wide range of activities including education, health, communication and science. It further supports the Welsh Government’s Wales for Africa programme.
2019-03-06 10:01:31 5 months ago