By: Ketemba Tjipepa
Veronica Frans, a Windhoek based hairdresser, is spearheading an initiative to raise about N$ 12 000 for a 35-year-old security guard, Simsolia Shapopi. Shapopi was working towards obtaining her qualification in criminal justice in policing. However, she put her studies on hold due to unpaid tuition fees and work obligations.
Shapopi, who enrolled through Mature Age entry in 2017 shared her plight with NewsOnOne earlier in August. Frans told NewsOnOne that Shapopi's story moved her so she created a WhatsApp group to help the 35-year-old realise her dream.
"It touched my heart,” she said after watching the news on OneAfrica. “Then I just went through my phone and thought “What if I start with a Whatsapp group for her? Maybe there are people that are willing to contribute and help her.” I came up with a WhatsApp group and people are joining," says Frans.
Frans and Shapopi, accompanied by one of the WhatsApp group members, went to the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) to find out what Shapopi owes the institution. It was confirmed that there is N$12,340.00 outstanding.
Frans hopes to have 120 people join the group. If each of them contribute N$100.00, they will have raised the whole N$12, 000 for Shapopi to go back to university. Frans shared that more than 30 people joined the group and are willing to help raise funds for Shapopi's education, while two women pledged to collectively contribute N$5 000. Frans invited individuals who want to help to join the group. "She is really in need of the money to further her studies,” Frans encouraged others.
Daniel Shuliputyo, a member of Frans’ WhatsApp group, stated that it hurts to watch people go through what Shapopi is experiencing. He said "We have to realise that we can all go through the same difficulty and experience, most of us as students or as individuals. The motive [for joining the group] is that we don’t want someone to suffer while we have the money or the assistance to deliver," stated Shuliputyo.
After learning of Frans' plan to assist her, Shapopi expressed her gratitude to everyone who took it upon themselves to help her achieve her dream of obtaining a university qualification.