WIND FARMS COLLABORATE WITH RENEWABLE AND SUSTAINABLE ENERGY DEPARTMENT
Loeriesfontein and Khobab Wind Farms are collaborating with the University of Stellenbosch’s Centre for Renewable and Sustainable Energy Studies to host a capacity building programme for Grade 7 to 12 teachers to provide professional development and learning materials. It is envisioned that through this partnership, educators will be skilled and inspired in the teaching of renewable energy topics.
The Wind Farms see this teachers’ capacity building programme as a follow-through on the Clean Energy Brighter Future renewable energy awareness programme, which launched last year for school learners in Loeriesfontein.
The programme targets approximately 70 learners to learn more about renewable energy through a programme designed to provide insight into the energy sector. The Wind Farms continue to work alongside local schools to broaden their understanding and experience of clean, green energy, with an emphasis on wind power.
Aimed at both Primary School (Grades 6 & 7) and High School, learners get to explore the myriad of careers in the energy sector. “We are taking this programme into the schools as well as bringing the learners onto our wind farms, so that learners can experience what our industry has to offer and envision a career through experiential learning and interaction,” explained Kevin Foster, Project Manager of Khobab Wind Farm.
The programme, Clean Energy Brighter Future, is designed to fit into the school’s curriculum as part of their Life Orientation, Geography, and Mathematics and Science studies and has become an annual event on the local schools’ academic calendars. This is coupled with an annual writing competition, which focuses on the learners’ future with renewable energy.
“We believe it is important that learners understand what wind energy is about, how it benefits our country, the environment and specifically the local community,” added Christo Loots, Project Manager of Loeriesfontein Wind Farm.
Through this programme, learners are exposed to the basics of renewable energy, how a wind turbine generates electricity and the need for renewable energy projects within South Africa, amongst other content.
The programme runs over two days and has a multi-pronged focus on the learners as well as the teachers. The learner programme will focus on education and awareness around wind energy; encouraging an interest in renewable energy career fields; helping learners understand the construction process and how their specific community will benefit from having a wind farm on its doorstep, both during and after construction. Whereas the teachers component is focused on the empowerment and capacitation of the teachers who will be covering aspects of renewable energy in the third quarter.
“All the educators benefited from the training as it was definitely hands-on and practical to use in class. Many of the teachers felt that their general knowledge has been improved, which would lead to better explaining concepts during lessons,” Mrs Zelda Vos, teacher at Loeriesfontein High.
31 July 2017