Multitudes of students thronged the Borwa Junior Secondary School hall to be equipped with life skills that could help them prioritise their education over drugs, teenage pregnancy, early sexual life and other social ills.
Various speakers at the well Day event held at Bokaa cautioned students against engaging in activities that could jeopardize their future. The Wellness Day was held under the theme – Curbing drug indulgence through life skills. The school had invited various personalities to make presentations to the students and coach them.
Director, Curriculum Development, Mr Leonard Mutheto who was guest speaker on the day spoke at length about promoting positive attributes in leaners. He observed that Borwa JSS decision to host a Wellness Day demonstrate a positive Vision on the part of the school despite being faced with the challenge of students who are engaged in drugs and are falling pregnant at a young age.
He appreciated that the school was doing something to address the problem. Mutheto told students to choose their friends carefully because in most cases they are a reflection of who they are. He encouraged students to ensure that focus on their education in order to prepare for a better future. He said teachers and parents must work together to shape the future of the learners.
Deputy School Head, Ms Caroline Muchengwa had earlier indicated that her school was trying it6s best to be among the best performing schools. She said they were on position two in the last Junior Certificate results albeit with a quality pass of 40 percent. She indicated that they are working hard to improve on their quality pass, something that was echoed by Mr Benjamin Radimo, who had shared that the Wellness Day is aimed at imparting the learners with life skills to ensure that they body and mind is focused on their education.
He was explaining the objectives of the Wellness Day, which also aims to expose students to various personalities outside school for purposes of grooming. Bonnie Kamona, Miss Botswana 2016 – 1st Princess motivated students urging to believe in who they are and avoid practices such as drug abuse which could terminate their school life and future prematurely.
Presenting on the topic – Transforming students outlook positively towards the media, Mr Aubrey Lute , Editor of the Weekend Post urged students choose their priorities right and focus on their education. He pointed out that drug use and other disturbing social ills were a major concern in schools. Speaking to the topic of the media he said the social media wave has forced the role of traditional media to change dramatically in the age of the internet.
Lute observed that today’s average student is more inclined towards leisure or entertainment rather than serious issues. He pointed out that “the world is not only looking for entertainers; there is more to life than entertainment!”. He said while generally students are not big customers of mainstream reading (serious newspapers) and attention listening (serious radio stations), today’s leaner must move from their comfort zone of watching soapies, movies, and reality television and mix them with more serious content such as current affairs, health, business etc.
While students’ relationship with social media is controversial in some instances because of the type of usage leaners adopt, Lute said it is important for parents and teachers to allow their children to access social media for academic purposes.
What role learners should play?
“n You must be responsible readers and listeners. Do not just glance at the headlines or capture the news headlines without appreciating the content and context. Most newspapers carry very educational pieces some of which can be relevant to the curriculum. Teachers at times borrow on such articles to enhance their teaching methods in classrooms hence learners must shift focus and use the media more constructively,” said Lute.
He said leaners must actively engage the media, mainstream and social, so that they improve their intellect, education, and creative value. But reading and engaging the media learning are giving themselves a chance to learn new things every day. They are in a position to gauge the country’s progress on many indices such as the economy, crime, democracy, among other indices.
Lute said social media can be a useful educational resource.
“Students should be encouraged to use social media to read serious content, (it usually directs to mainstream website with useful content that can shape the academic life of a student). But a word of caution is that students need a dedicated system at home and at school for them to use social media effectively. Parents and educators must introduce the subject of social media early so as to guide students in the right direction.
They must demonstrate how social media can be used for educational purposes. Educators and parents must show students the negative consequences of using social media inappropriately.”
The Botswana DanceSport Association (BODANSA) has been graced with a financial boon of P45,000 courtesy of Turnstar Holdings. This generous endowment is earmarked for the illustrious Botswana International Dance Sport Grand Prix Championships, which are scheduled to animate Gaborone from Friday to Saturday.
At a media engagement held early today, BODANSA’s Marketing Maestro, Tiro Ntwayagae, shared that Turnstar Holdings Limited has bestowed a gift of P45,000 towards the grand spectacle.
“We are thrilled to announce that this backing will enable us to orchestrate a cultural soirée at the Game City Marque locale, a night brimming with cultural fervor set for March 1, 2024, from 6pm to the stroke of midnight.
This enchanting space will also serve as the battleground for the preliminaries of traditional dance ensembles—spanning the rhythmically rich Setapa to the euphoric beats of Sebirwa, the spirited Seperu, the heavenly Hosana, and more—in a competition folded into the Traditional Dance Groups Category. The ensemble that dances into the judges’ hearts will clinch a grand prize of P10,000,” elaborated Ntwayagae.
He further illuminated that the cultural eve would not only celebrate traditional melodies but also the fresh beats of contemporary dance variants including Hip Hop, Sbujwa, Amapiano, among others, in a dazzling display of modern dance mastery.
Moreover, these championships carry the prestigious recognition by the World DanceSport Federation as a qualifying round for the Breakdance category for the Paris 2024 Olympics. “This is a monumental opportunity for athletes to leap towards their Olympic dreams during one of the penultimate qualifiers,” underscored Ntwayagae.
Looking ahead to March 2, 2024, the festivities will propel into the University of Botswana Indoor Sports Arena for the championship’s climactic showdowns encompassing Breakdance, Latin, and Ballroom Dancing.
In Botswana, a beacon of democracy in Africa, the right to participate in the political discourse is a cornerstone of its societal structure. It’s an avenue through which citizens shape the rules and systems that govern their everyday lives. Despite this, recent studies indicate that Individuals with Disabilities (IWDs) are notably absent from political dialogues and face substantial hurdles in exercising their democratic freedoms.
Research within the nation has uncovered that IWDs encounter difficulties in engaging fully with the political process, with a pronounced gap in activities beyond mere voting. The call for environments that are both accessible and welcoming to IWDs is loud, with one participant, who has a physical disability, spotlighting the absence of ramps at voting venues and the dire need for enhanced support to facilitate equitable involvement in the electoral process.
The challenges highlighted by the study participants pinpoint the structural and social obstacles that deter IWDs from participating wholly in democracy. The inaccessibility of voting facilities and the lack of special accommodations for people with disabilities are critical barriers. Those with more significant or intellectual disabilities face even steeper challenges, often feeling marginalized and detached from political engagement.
To surmount these obstacles, there is an urgent appeal for Botswana to stride towards more inclusive and accessible political stages for IWDs. This necessitates a committed effort from both the government and relevant entities to enforce laws and policies that protect the rights of IWDs to partake in the political framework. Enhancing awareness and understanding of the political landscape among IWDs, alongside integrating inclusive practices within political entities and governmental bodies, is crucial.
By dismantling these barriers and nurturing an inclusive political environment, Botswana can live up to its democratic ideals, ensuring every citizen, regardless of ability, can have a substantive stake in the country’s political future.
Individuals challenged by disabilities encounter formidable obstacles when endeavoring to partake in political processes within the context of Botswana. Political involvement, a cornerstone of democratic governance, empowers citizens to shape the legislative landscape that impacts their daily existence. Despite Botswana’s reputation for upholding democratic ideals, recent insights unveil a troubling reality – those with disabilities find themselves marginalized in the realm of politics, contending with substantial barriers obstructing the exercise of their democratic liberties.
A recent inquiry in Botswana unveiled a panorama where individuals with disabilities confront hurdles in navigating the political arena, their involvement often restricted to the basic act of voting. Voices emerged from the study, underscoring the critical necessity of fostering environments that are accessible and welcoming, affording individuals with disabilities the active engagement they rightfully deserve in political processes. Noteworthy was the account of a participant grappling with physical impairments, shedding light on the glaring absence of ramps at polling stations and the urgent call for enhanced support mechanisms to ensure an equitable electoral participation.
The echoes reverberating from these narratives serve as poignant reminders of the entrenched obstacles impeding the full integration of individuals with disabilities into the democratic tapestry. The inaccessibility of polling stations and the glaring absence of provisions tailored to the needs of persons with disabilities loom large as formidable barricades to their political engagement. Particularly pronounced is the plight of those grappling with severe impairments and intellectual challenges, who face even steeper hurdles in seizing political participation opportunities, often grappling with feelings of isolation and exclusion from the political discourse.
Calls for decisive action cascade forth, urging the establishment of more inclusive and accessible political ecosystems that embrace individuals with disabilities in Botswana. Government bodies and concerned stakeholders are urged to prioritize the enactment of laws and policies designed to safeguard the political rights of individuals with disabilities. Furthermore, initiatives geared towards enhancing awareness and education on political processes and rights for this segment of society must be spearheaded, alongside the adoption of inclusive measures within political institutions and party structures.
By dismantling these barriers and nurturing a political landscape that is truly inclusive, Botswana can earnestly uphold its democratic ethos and afford every citizen, including those with disabilities, a substantive opportunity to partake in the political fabric of the nation.