NAMIBIA: POVERTY/NBC/28/8/18 SABANews 1
OKAHANDJA – Informal settlements in NAMIBIA continue to experience high levels of poverty, despite government efforts to correct the situation.
NBC News says a 40-year-old resident of OKAHANDJA, a city of 24-THOUSAND people in OTJOZONDJUPA Region, has opened a soup kitchen in the VERGENOEG area.
It quotes CHRISTIANA SWARTBOOI as saying she has come up with the project in order to help feed poor members of her vulnerable community.
The national broadcaster says she opened the soup kitchen with the disadvantage and vulnerable children of the town in mind.
Ms SWARTBOOI, who is not employed, says her kitchen caters for about 128 children from MONDAY to SATURDAY.
She says it all started after a FIVE-year-old boy with his younger brother woke her up ONE morning asking for any leftover food.
Ms SWARTBOOI says the event broke her heart; and she decided to open the kitchen and a playschool from which she makes a little amount of money.
She says she uses the earnings to buy food and keep the soup kitchen running, but the business faces some challenges such as lack of water, sanitation facilities, and electricity.
However, Ms SWARTBOOI says despite all the difficulties, she still has big dreams for the project; and she calls on any GOOD SAMARITAN out there to help keep the soup kitchen running.
Researchers and authors say the SADC country is undergoing a rapid transition from a rural-based society to one based largely in urban areas.
They say the situation is most visible in informal settlements that accommodate poor families in shacks on the edges of towns.
Urban NAMIBIA reportedly now has some 140-THOUSAND unofficial homes and the number may double over the next SEVEN or EIGHT years if the authorities do not address the trend urgently./Sabanews/cam