WHEN Klaudia Ndahangwapo (KN) completed her Bachelor of Education at the University of Namibia (UNAM) in 2008, she could not secure fulltime employment as a teacher; a profession she dreamt of as a little girl. After working on temporal posts for several years, her childhood dreams faded in 2013 when the posts were not renewed. A year later, she established the Great Victory Daycare and Pre-Primary in Khomasdal to continue her dreams of being a teacher as well as to have an income. The daycare centre has grown over the years and now has 60 children and five teachers In an interview with Confidente (C) recently, Klaudia spoke in detail about establishing the daycare centre and why it is important for unemployed graduates to create employment for themselves and others.
C: Tell us about yourself and upbringing?
KN: My name is Klaudia Ndahangwapo. I am from Okatope village in the Ohangwena region and I grew up in a large family. I attended primary school at Okatope Combined School and completed my senior secondary certificate at AME community school in Gibeon, in the Hardap region. Growing up, I was always aspiring to be a teacher because my guardians were both teachers. I graduated from the University of Namibia with my Bachelor in Education in 2008. I am married to a wonderful and supportive husband Samuel Ndahangwapo and we have three children.
C: Tell us about the establishment of Great Victory daycare and Pre-primary and services it offers?
KN: After graduating from the University of Namibia, I did not secure a permanent teaching post in Windhoek where my family is based. So for a period of two years or so I only got temporary contracts for teaching posts which ended at the end of 2013. So in 2014, being unemployed we decided to start a daycare at home. Great victory daycare and preprimary caters for children that are seven months up to 5 years. We offer full and half daycare services. The centre is open at 6h30 am and closes 17h30 pm.
C: What challenges did you encounter when establishing the daycare and how did you overcome them?
KN: Meeting the requirement of the Ministry of Gender and Child Welfare and local authorities to register before operating a daycare. Getting the daycare known and attracting customers. We started with two children and only had these for a number of months. Competing with the current and established daycare centres in the area was another challenge. We then acquainted ourselves with the requirements and frequently met with the representatives from the ministry and local authorities and made the necessary adjustments as required. We also advertised the centre in the media on a regular basis and a number of parents referred the center to their colleagues, family and friends. We strive to be consistent in the services we offer and deliver on our promises.
C: Tell us about some activities you offer the little ones.
KN: We use a holistic approach to child development which includes physical, social, emotional and cognitive development activities. We do activities outside the daycare centre such as visiting a zoo etc.
C: What are current challenges and opportunities facing the centre?
KN: Getting a place to operate the daycare. If we can get a place we can increase the number of children that we can enroll as we are currently limited in terms of the number of kids we can enroll as per the local authority regulations. C: What do you hope to achieve for the little ones by the time they start formal schooling?
NK: By the time the kids leave the daycare center they would have mastered the alphabet, phonics, shapes, writing their own names and being able to socialise with other kids which are indispensable when they start grade 1.
C: What advice would you give fellow women keen on starting a daycare?
NK: You must have love for kids and be patient. Just start and do not wait for perfect conditions.
C: Just what do you do for little fun?
NK: I love gardening and baking. This is what I do in my spare time
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