The Ozongama Zomuara Foundation, established in 2015 by the late Ovaherero Queen Meriam Rukoro is continuing to impact lives through its charitable work with the leaders of its dedicated young members (her children and family).
Meriam Rukoro, who was the wife of Ovaherero Paramount Chief Advocate Vekuii Rukoro, died in 2017. Ozongama Zomuara is an Otjiherero term, which translates ‘The birth pains of the first lady. Nguvii Rukoro, son of the late and the executive director of the foundation said the purpose of such an organisation is solely to be a pillar of hope for community members.
“The purpose of the Ozongama Zomuara Foundation is to endeavour, promote and support towards the betterment of the social wellbeing of individuals and the community, as well as helping the community combat against deterioration of drugs and alcohol abuse,” he shared.
He mentioned the foundation aims to teach individuals to fish for themselves, instead of waiting to be given the fish by the fisherman. The team has noticed a huge gap between the living conditions of the poor and the rich, which they seek to minimise.
Rukoro added his mother wanted to do well in the community and it is something worth continuing.
“She wanted to make a difference in the lives of those who were not as fortunate enough as most of us and that is how this organisation came about. I then decided to not let her legacy fade away in vain and took it upon myself to revive it as well as her dream and be the change that will make a difference in another person’s life,” he elucidated.
“My mother hosted quite a few activities in the past, such as building a new house for a lady whose house had burned down, as well as donating food parcels to the less privileged. She built a house for a boy who was born without eyes and his family who had no shelter at the time, as well as feeding the war veterans and the pensioners who used to reside at the Commando in Katutura. She provided financial assistance to individuals who were in need, as well as donating clothes and blankets to the less privileged,” stated Rukoro.
He added: “Last year, when I decided to continue her legacy and carry on with helping those in need, the Ozongama Zomuara Foundation collaborated with the RTE Foundation. We visited the family of the boy who was born without eyes and we donated food parcels to the family, as well as getting the young boy a music player to listen to because he enjoys listening to music.”
Rukoro said they identified some factors within communities that they will tackle, such as donating sanitary pads to girls who are unable to afford them, clothes, blankets and food parcels to the less privileged, visit the local schools within the townships and having motivational talks with them.
He humbly appealed to corporates who are willing to collaborate with the foundation and donate products such as facemasks and sanitary products during these dire days of Covid-19 so that they can help distribute them to the needy communities.
“We are targeting the townships, as most of the underprivileged individuals reside there and there is a major need of sanitation in the townships, so we need all the help we can get right now,” he concluded.