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HSF inaugurates Aris Primary School aquaponics system

Summary

The Hanns Seidel Foundation (HSF) Namibia on Tuesday inaugurated the first pilot aquaponics system at the Aris Primary School under its ‘Contributing to Food Security in Namibia’ initiative.The one-year project, funded by the Embassy of Finland to supp…

The Hanns Seidel Foundation (HSF) Namibia on Tuesday inaugurated the first pilot aquaponics system at the Aris Primary School under its ‘Contributing to Food Security in Namibia’ initiative.

The one-year project, funded by the Embassy of Finland to support improvement of local knowledge, skills and human capacity development in the field of climate-resilient aquaponics, was also handed over to the school to manage.

Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, HSF resident representative, Dr Clemens von Doderer said the foundation aims to add value and contribute to Namibia’s development.

“We have information available for more people to learn so that we can all contribute to food security in Namibia and to improve the nutritional aspect in Namibia, especially for learners and the young generation,” he said.

Speaking at the same occasion, programme coordinator at the Embassy of Finland, Hannele Hupanen, said the embassy is funding the aquaponics project to advance adaptation to climate change in Namibia, to strengthen food security and create sustainable livelihoods.

“The project was selected for its innovative and holistic approach, as well as the potential to create a lasting impact on food security in Namibia. The harshness of drought and effects of climate change are something that everyone is familiar with. To address those challenges, cooperation and innovation are the best ways to find solutions,” she said.

Hupanen also stated that it is important that the community has full ownership of the project and the opportunity to adopt the system as a learning tool as well as a valuable asset, a source of food and income in the interest of sustainability and long-term benefits to the community.

“It’s great to see this system as the first of many and it can act as a showcase for future visitors and people interested in the potential of aquaponics systems. It’s also a big benefit for this kind of project that kids and young people can learn about aquaponics through observing and being trained about the system. Learning by doing, with a system like this, can be such a great way to discover how ecosystems work, how circular economy works and how food can also be grown,” Hupanen said.

The school has 116 learners and caters for orphans and vulnerable children from surrounding farms.

Aris Primary School head Frank Williams said the initiative will help with the provision of food to the learners and also practically teach them theories taught in agriculture and in life science subjects.

“This will contribute to the health of learners and help them learn, develop and become productive Namibian citizens,” Williams said.

Source: Namibia Press Agency