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You are here: Home eNewsletter Archives 2009 February 2009 SA joins hands with Lesotho to promote science as a career

SA joins hands with Lesotho to promote science as a career


Joe Sibiya, SAEON Ndlovu Node's Education Outreach Officer, tells learners more about careers in environmental science.

- Joe Sibiya, Education Outreach Officer, SAEON Ndlovu Node and Sikhonzile Nxumalo of the Department of Science and Technology

Towards the end of last year, the Government of Lesotho invited its South African counterpart to participate in the Lesotho National Science Week (LNSW) hosted by their Department of Communication Science and Technology.

South Africa's Department of Science and Technology (DST) mobilised its facilities to participate as part of the effort to strengthen public understanding of science and technology in Lesotho. SAEON, as a DST-funded facility and represented by Joe Sibiya, formed part of the South African delegation to LNSW.

The LNSW was held at the Maseru Convention Centre in Lesotho. The themes for LNSW 2008 were based on the celebration of the International Year of Planet Earth, and included Water Management and Conservation, Climate Change and Environmental Management.

The event was officially opened by the Honourable Minister of Communication, Science and Technology of Lesotho, Mr Mothejoa Metsing. In his address he emphasised the need to continue with efforts to demystify science in communities, and encouraged the youth to opt for careers in science and technology. Minister Metsing also challenged scientists to translate their research into products and services that would have a positive socio-economic impact in societies. He acknowledged the presence of the South African delegation with thanks.

The event was attended by learners from primary and high schools, as well as university students. The exhibitors at the event included learners who presented their science and technology projects, entrepreneurs primarily from agriculture, Indigenous Knowledge and related fields, institutions of higher learning and private sector partners.

The South African pavillion boasted three major exhibition stands. These were manned by SAEON, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research's Satellite Applications Centre, and the DST's Space Science Unit. A team from the South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA) ran science shows throughout the week, whilst volunteers from the National Student Financial Aid Scheme of South Africa (NSFAS) ran career workshops on behalf of their Science and Youth unit.

As usual SAEON's colourful stand attracted learners in their droves. The computer bird game was as popular as ever and young and old queued for their turns.

I believe SAEON has made a long-lasting impression on the learners of our neighbouring country who visited the Science Week.

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