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Disaster mitigation uses radio best

Director of NAMCOL, Heroldt Murangi (left) and Deputy Director: Finance and Administration at NAMCOL, Petrina Kamati (right) handing radio recordings to the chief clerk at the Caprivi Regional Council, Irene Mwazi and the chief clerk at the Omusati Regional Council, Martin Hausiku (Photograph by Hilma Hashange)

Director of NAMCOL, Heroldt Murangi (left) and Deputy Director: Finance and Administration at NAMCOL, Petrina Kamati (right) handing radio recordings to the chief clerk at the Caprivi Regional Council, Irene Mwazi and the chief clerk at the Omusati Regional Council, Martin Hausiku (Photograph by Hilma Hashange)

The Namibian College of Open Learning (NAMCOL) has entered into a partnership with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to develop educational radio programmes focusing on disaster risk preparedness, reduction and management, for rural communities.
The Disaster Risk Reduction educational radio programmes were broadcast on the national broadcasting service, NBC National Radio, Base FM in Windhoek, Ohangwena Community Radio in Eenhana, UNAM Radio, Live FM in Rehoboth as well as Karas Community Radio in the south. The programmes are aimed at developing disaster resilient communities hence the translation of the programmes from English to Oshiwambo and Silozi to ensure that the intended message reaches the targeted communities in the northern parts of the country.Topics covered in the programme include “Importance of Education in Emergencies”, “Protection in Emergencies” and “Disaster Management and Community Involvement” amongst others. A total of 5000 translated CD’s have been duplicated and will be shared amongst the northen regions, with 3000 being distributed to the far northern regions and 2000 to the Caprivi region. Soon the programmes will be translated into other local languages especially in the dialects of the Kavango region which has suffered disasters many times in the past.
Speaking at the handover,  Director of NAMCOL, Heroldt Murangi reinforced the role of education in preparing for and negating the impact of disasters once they occur. “Disaster, whether resulting from natural or man-made hazards, can destroy hard-earned development and educational achievements as it interrupts the development plans of any given country, consequently, disaster risk reduction initiatives can make or break the preparedness of any community to natural disasters,” Murangi said.
He added that NAMCOL  was aware of the fact that the goal of developing disaster-resilient communities rest upon the success of disaster risk reducation education, hence his institution took it upon itself to contribute to the Disaster Risk Preparedness and Reduction efforts nationally.
Murangi thanked UNESCO for providing financial and technical support for the project. He said that disaster initiatives such as this can only be realized with support of developmental partners such as UNESCO, and encouraged other stakeholders to emulate their efforts.
Receiving the material on behalf of their respective regions, the chief clerk at the Caprivi Regional Council, Irene Mwazi and the chief clerk at the Omusati Regional Council, Martin Hausiku said with the help of the Ministry of Information, Communication and Technology, the material will reach the intended audiences who will be empowered with the necessary knowledge and information for the development of disaster resilient communities.
The CD’s will be distributed to the various radio stations as well as schools in the respective regions.

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