The director and founder of COTS, Nosiphiwe Ngqwala, explains that teaching children the importance of water conservation and general environmental education is vital for the future. Her initiative is grounded in promoting action from education, which begins with lectures in the classrooms and leads to activities such today’s seed-planting event.
The school describes itself as “health promoting” and the billboard in the parking lot at the entrance states in large letters, “a healthy setting for living, learning and working.” It is schools like these that COTS enjoys approaching, usually targeting Grades 4 and 5. William Salapha says that “by having hands-on activities, we excite the kids.”
The children certainly appeared excited, holding their hands out for seeds and digging pitchforks into the soil. A little while into the event, a group of grade 7s from a nearby school, Good Shepherd arrive, and join in on the process.
Rhodes University students are also present, such as members of the Namibian Society (NamSoc), which aims to engage with the community. Jason Hutchins, a member says of the event that “Its good just being a part of it. Societies should not just be involved on campus- we want to be an example.” Of COTS’ initiative, Hutchins responds by saying that “changes should be done now- and this is the way to do it- sooner rather than later.”