Woman of Excellence pledges to care for disabled

28 April 2017

Ebenecia Tjiveta of Onyose Trust was recently named as one of Standard Bank’s Woman of Excellence in 2016 for her work with mentally and physically disabled people. Standard Bank supports the development, empowerment and recognition of women in all sectors of society by contributing financially towards the Namibian Women of Excellence project through the Miss Namibia Pageant.

Formerly known as the Jurgen Wahn Trust, the Onyose Trust cares for over 45 children and young adults who either suffer from mental or physical disabilities.

The Trust provides a holistic service, including day care and community-based rehabilitation programmes for people with a range of disabilities, while giving people with disabilities skills to live independently as much as possible within their own communities.

The Trust also provides training for families, carers, community members and volunteers on how to care for and stimulate people with disabilities.

Tjiveta joined the Trust in 2004 after she received a Diploma in Community Work in Australia.

“Upliftment is defined as improvement of a person’s moral and spiritual condition or making someone feel better…My life’s journey has always been linked to helping other people. I had that passion since I was young. I now live to serve, and this brings me great fulfilment,” Tjiveta recently said of her drive to work for the Onyose Trust.

Tjiveta noted that she finds joy in helping and supporting the disadvantaged.

The experience has helped her with personal growth because it has taught her to be patient, humble and appreciate people for whom they are.

The role a woman plays in any community is an insurmountable one and that fact is not lost on Tjiveta, who has assumed the role of a mother.

“Mothers have a unique and crucial role to play in community upliftment. Due to their strong characters, women are in a position to bring changes in communities. Women are faced with multiple challenges in our changing world, but one factor remains constant; the timeless importance of mothers and their invaluable contribution to raising the next generation. By rewarding their efforts…, we can secure a better future for all,” she said.

While her devotion to the cause has not wavered, her duties are not without their challenges. Tjiveta often has to stretch limited financial resources to fund the Trust’s activities.

She also faces a shortage of staff, volunteers and health professionals, and a bus to transport clients to and from their homes, as well as food to feed clients.

“We have encountered various challenges, but continued with determination and patience to do this much-needed work in our community. It is important in this line of work to note that an act of kindness to others is an act of kindness to Christ.

“I encourage you to start today and lend a helping hand to others in need. Our help should not be limited to just giving people money, food and clothes. Sometimes people need someone to listen to them. Sometimes people just need words of wisdom,” Tjiveta explained.



The Windhoek Observer is an English-language weekly newspaper, published in Namibia by Paragon Investment Holding. It is the country's oldest and largest circulating weekly.

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