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Competition ignites a passion for renewable energy among learners

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Grade 9 learners from St Anna Private School in Namaqualand secured victory in the 2024 Turbine Triumph competition, hosted at the Okiep Country Hotel to mark Global Wind Day.

The St Anna Private School learners clinched R10,000 for their school. Picture: Supplied

GRADE 9 learners from St Anna Private School in Namaqualand emerged as the overall winners of the 2024 Turbine Triumph competition that was held at the Okiep Country Hotel in celebration of Global Wind Day this year.

Hosted in June, the competition winners scooped a R10,000 cash prize for their school through their innovative turbine model and essay on renewable energy.

The competition saw learners across several high schools in Namaqualand come together to observe Global Wind Day by building working turbine models, with the aim to ignite a deeper interest in renewable energy and support STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education in the region.

The participating schools included Concordia High School, Okiep High School, SA van Wyk High School, High School Namaqualand, St Anna High School and Nababeep High School.

Funded by Kangnas Wind Farm, the event highlighted the renewable energy producer’s commitment to community engagement and support for local education.

Besides the R10,000 for their school, the winners also walked away with individual prizes including smart watches and portable earpods.

They will also be visiting the Kangnas Wind Farm later this year.

The economic development manager at Kangnas Wind Farm, Rouchet Daniels, said the event not only promotes STEM education, but also raises awareness about renewable energy and the different career opportunities available, which are not only limited to the renewable energy sector.

“Therefore, by engaging with local schools, the competition helps build trust and goodwill. Thus, fostering a stronger relationship with the surrounding communities,” said Daniels.

The principal of St Anna Private School, Sylvia Cathi, expressed her pride in the learners and their dedication.

“We are very happy and excited about our win. The whole of Namaqualand has been celebrating with us, as many followed the competition on the radio. Parents, educators, and learners are all excited and proud of our team’s performance,” said Cathi.

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