From Little Date Seeds, Great Things Are Born
– Namibian Proverb
CCF hosts one of the largest intakes of Namibian interns and provides one of the largest varieties of internship opportunities. Each year we see more and more students, and by looking at the activity in this past quarter, there is no evidence this trend is slowing down.
Because Namibia is below the equator, the seasons are reversed. While people in the U.S. are huddled around the fireplace in winter, Namibian students are outdoors enjoying their summer break. Our CCF interns get hands-on experience that not only provides practical knowledge, but also help form an ethos or genuine care and love for animals.
In the recent group, two of our genetics interns, Maggie Kamati and Harmonie Tshimwanga, confessed they both had a fear of dogs. In fact, neither of them had ever willingly touched one. In our day-to-day tasks at CCF, all interns rotate through different departments to learn about the various programs and assist with tasks. In this process, these young ladies began overcoming their fear of dogs by working with animals in our Livestock Guardian Dog Program. Not just the cute and cuddly puppies, but they began interacting with the full-size Anatolian Shepherds and Kangals, too. In time, and by building trust with these creatures, their fears were overcome.
“Today, with a growing interest and passion in our young adults in conservation, we are seeing a movement among people and our world leaders to recognize the importance of biodiversity to the survival of our planet,” said Nadja LeRoux, CCF’s Education Manager.
“Through the years of environmental education CCF has conducted at schools we are steadily seeing the growth of young Namibians following their career choices,” said Dr. Laurie Marker. “Watching our students grow as they explore their theoretical knowledge, put it into practice and develop a sincere passion for what they have chosen as a career is one of our highest achievements to date.”
CCF recently hosted a dynamic group of interns studying Ecology, Animal Health, Food Science, Wildlife Management & Eco Tourism, Genetics, Agriculture, Forestry and Wildlife Management. They represented a variety of colleges and universities, including University of Namibia and Namibia University of Science and Technology, as well as others in Zambia, Zimbabwe, Democratic Republic of Congo, the U.S. and Canada.