The Etanga Community Resource Centre (renamed The Veripaka Community Resource Center by the Veripaka Committee of Etanga) was built in Etanga in 2003. On demand of the community, Rina Sherman, director of The Ovahimba Years research and cultural heritage preservation project, developed the community resource centre project over a period of three years; she raised the funds, concerted with community members and funders, and coordinated the building process of the project, liaising with community members, funders, architects and builders. During Rina Sherman’s seven year field work tenure in Etanga and its outskirts and in Angola, the project, The Ovahimba Years, was run by Low Tech Film Art, a Namibian not-for-profit organization, managed by an all-Namibian board, and for French funding, by Art Cinématographique Artisanal, a French not-for-profit association (loi 1901).
The principal aims of the Centre Project is to alleviate poverty and to provide guidance and vocational training programs to the adult and youth of both the literate and illiterate components of the community of Etanga and its outlying districts. The main contributors to funding of the Centre project were Namsov Community Trust, the EU Microprojects Programme, the French, German and Spanish Embassies, the British High Commission and Solarage, to mention but a few. The Centre was completed at the beginning of 2004 and management of the centre was handed over to the community shortly thereafter.
During her tenure in the field, Rina Sherman also participated in several other community projects over the years, such as rebuilding of the road, restoration of the rest camp, renovating the borehole and later replacement and repairs of the water pump, sourcing books and other materials for the school over the years, building of extra class rooms of the school, etc.
Site Handing Over Meeting with presentation of Centre Model – 2003
Community Youth Members participating in Construction – 2004