Namibia: High school learners gear up to discuss pressing public health matters

Namibia: High school learners gear up to discuss pressing public health matters

Namibia: High school learners gear up to discuss pressing public health matters

Namibia: High school learners gear up to discuss pressing public health matters

Eighty learners from high schools in Windhoek and Osire are preparing to discuss pressing public health challenges of our time when they meet to simulate the United Nations in Windhoek.

The learners met at the United Nations office in Windhoek on Saturday, 21 October for mock simulations in preparation for the Model United Nations Namibia (MUNNAM) conference scheduled for 1 and 2 November. 

Model UN is a dynamic simulation of UN bodies that enables young people to take on the role of diplomats and thus gain first-hand experience in international relations and diplomacy. 

The delegates will discuss “the rising burden of chronic diseases and pandemics poses a challenge for public health systems and requires innovative approaches to improve population health, A new wave in public health”.

The deliberations will allow the delegates to debate, lobby and present their positions to formulate a resolution addressing global health challenges and their related socio-economic and political effects. 

In light of the World Health Organization’s 75th anniversary this year, UN Namibia is partnering with the British High Commission in Namibia and the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture to present MUNNAM. 

The MUNNAM programme lays a foundation for young people to have a vested interest in world politics and it is a fun experiential learning activity. 

WHO Namibia’s Health Promotion and Social Determinants Officer, Celia Kaunatjike says the WHO’s 75th anniversary is very important and it is an opportunity to highlight key achievements in global health. 

Kaunatjike also noted that the MUNNAM is an important platform and this year it will give young people the opportunity to voice their opinions on global public health challenges and how to solve them.

“UNIC Windhoek has been running this programme for 11 years and we wanted to partner with them and use that platform to engage young people. We regard young people as partners,” said Kaunatjike. 

“The Model UN Namibia (MUNNAM) team is excited to meet the new delegates for the 2023 Conference. The ongoing support of the teachers and passionate past participants are instrumental to the success and continuity of the programme. It takes a village to keep the Model UN programme a sustainable programme for 11 years, we remain grateful to all contributors,” said Anthea Basson, Head of the United Nations Information Centre in Windhoek.

The Deputy British High Commissioner to Namibia, Charlotte Fenton said: “The British High Commission in Namibia is pleased to support Model UN for the third consecutive year. The programme nurtures an awareness of global citizenship and cultivates an ethos of collaboration among learners. It is inspiring to watch high school learners articulate their ideas and engage in diplomatic discourse with confidence and enthusiasm in the span of two days. I wish all learners all the best of luck in their preparation for the 2023 conference”.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of World Health Organization (WHO) – Namibia.