Namibia: Uranium Miner Boosts'clean Cooking' At Leonardville

Helping more than 685 children receive a daily balanced meal, Headspring Investment, a subsidiary company of Uranium One, donated a modern kitchen to Noasanabis Primary School at Leonardville.

The kitchen, estimated to have cost the company N$3 million, started with a feeding scheme in 2022 to promote clean cooking among pupils.

"When Headspring Investments started with the feeding scheme, the company saw that the food was prepared in black pots on open fires.

"This is obviously not ideal, hence the company decided to construct a kitchen for the school," says Uranium One spokesperson Riaan van Rooyen.

Recently, agriculture, water and land reform minister Calle Schlettwein participated in a clean cooking summit in France, which aimed to make Africa a better place by mitigating the impacts of a lack of access to clean cooking.

Schlettwein said cooking with firewood or charcoal is unhealthy and contributes to global warming, health risks and gender equality and has affected more than 175 million households on the African continent.

"It is not about the money invested, but that this kitchen, together with the feeding scheme, will ensure that the pupils can concentrate on their education, as a hungry child will not be able to concentrate at school. The food can now be prepared in a safe and hygienic way," Van Rooyen says. Noasanabis Primary School principal Alfons Hiurika expressed his excitement about the project.

"Many of the children attend school, as they are assured of one balanced meal per day. Since Headspring Investments started with the feeding scheme, our school attendance numbers are up. This is a very good development for our community. "The food is prepared by about 10 parents who start early in the morning to make sure that the food is ready by 09h30 when the smaller children are being served. The bigger children are served at about 11h00."

Headspring Investments director Kirill Egorov-Kirillov says the initiative is part of the company's N$900 million investment to support the communities, as well as economic growth in the Omaheke region. Rosatom, the mother company of both Uranium One and Headspring Investments, has a philosophy to help and uplift the communities in which it operates.

"Although our operations have temporarily been stopped, we continue to invest in the communities where our operations are situated.

"Should we be allowed to continue to operate and recover our investment of N$900 million, the support to the communities, as well as the economic growth in the Omaheke region, and even the whole of Namibia, will be phenomenal. But for now, we are excited and honoured to donate this kitchen to the school," he says.

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