Kopenhagen Fur makes a difference in Namibia
Annually, a delegation consisting of Danish mink producers and Kopenhagen Fur (KF) employees visits Kindergartens in Windhoek’s informal settlement areas. KF have supported some 40 Kindergartens to a tune of N$ 4.5 million (2.5 million Danish krone) since the initiative’s inception in 2007. Describing how the project was discovered, Wessel Visser, Agra ProVision’s Manager
for Social Business and Services said that during the visit of Mr Torben Nielsen, CEO of Kopenhagen Fur to Namibia in 2006, he requested a visit to the informal areas of the city. “When we arrived at the squatter camps (informal areas), Torben was so touched by the poor living conditions and asked how Kopenhagen Fur can get involved to help the children living there.” “I immediately got in touch with a local church and the Life Change Centre who identified the schools, which could benefit from the project. I then submitted the project proposal,” Wessel said. Since 2010, the project has become a part of the S.P.E.S Charity program (Step out of Poverty through Encouragement, Education and Support).
The project leader from Kopenhagen Fur, Inge Østermand states that the project is sustained by employees who make a voluntary contribution to the Namibian Kindergarten Fund and Danish farmers also donate mink pelts to be auctioned on behalf of this fund. Inge added that the supporters of this fund are afforded the opportunity to come on an all-expenses paid trip to visit the Kindergartens in Namibia. “Every year, the names of two contributing employees and one farmer’s couple are determined by a lucky draw to visit the Kindergarten project in Namibia. Apart from that, they also get an opportunity to visit a Swakara farm and some sightseeing,” said Ms Østermand. She concluded by saying, “Kopenhagen Fur is delighted to be part of a project that adds value to life.”
Mr Peter Kazmaier, CEO of Agra honours the assistance from the Kopenhagen Fur counterparts. He said, “Since the inception of this project, there has been a positive shift in the life of these children. We are grateful to Kopenhagen Fur and the producers for visiting our sorting centre and most importantly for the major role they are playing for future generations of Namibia.”