11 January 2010
by Obert Chinhamo, UNV Programme Officer, Windhoek
International Volunteer Day was celebrated in Namibia through three major activities: awareness raising; the planting of trees; and the launch of the Havana Multi- Purpose Centre in Katutura, which is situated at the periphery of the City of Windhoek.
On 4 December, UNV volunteers started by disseminating advocacy materials on IVD, UNV, climate change, online volunteering and other subjects. Also on 'Good Morning Namibia', which is one of the linchpin opening programmes of the Namibia Broadcasting Corporation (NBC), the National Planning Commission (NPC) was showcased talking about the importance of volunteering and inviting people to attend the celebrations.
On the actual day, delegates started by planting and naming 120 trees. The Minister of Environment and Tourism, Hon. Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah named her tree ‘Biodiversity’, whilst Mr. Lebogang Motlana, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative named his tree ‘Copenhagen’. Other names given included: ‘Volunteering for Development’ and ‘Seal the Deal’.
After the planting of trees, delegates were transported to the Kabila Community Village for the official launch of the Centre. Whilst opening the Centre the Director General of the National Planning Commission (NPC), Prof. Peter Katjavivi thanked all those who made financial and material contributions. He urged delegates to continue similar initiatives since they directly help to reduce poverty.
The celebrations were attended by more than 600 people drawn from government institutions, UN agencies, the private sector, volunteers and Volunteer Involving Organizations.