by Okeri Ngutjinazo

A COVID-19 task force consisting of churches recently handed over clothing, food and other items worth N$21 000 to a group of homeless people, who are accommodated at the Khomasdal Soccer Field.

LEFTOVER SOUP … Jacky Arnoster prepares soup while waiting for the church to drop off food. The group says they receive two meals per day. Photo: Henry van Rooi

The church task force is a joint effort of the Council of Churches in Namibia (CCN) and the Association of Charismatic and Pentecostal Churches in Namibia (ACPCN) as a response to Covid-19.

Pastor Shalom Nghifitikeko told The Namibian yesterday the donation to the less fortunate would go a long way towards ensuring no Namibian goes hungry during the lockdown.

The task force would also facilitate psychosocial support, prayer and other necessities through congregations across the country.

The government has accommodated nearly 300 homeless people at the Katutura Youth Complex and Khomasdal Soccer Stadium.

Four tents have been erected at the Khomasdal Soccer Field with a maximum of 10 people in each tent to avoid overcrowding.

Around 30 people are currently accommodated at the soccer field, including four women and two toddlers.

The people in the group are from streets in Windhoek’s central business district and Klein Windhoek.

The ministry of health, with the assistance of the police, Khomas Regional Council and the ministry of gender, is assisting those without shelter in Windhoek during the lockdown.

Speaking to The Namibian, Ashley Slinger, who is accommodated at the stadium, said he does not mind staying there for the remainder of the lockdown, but wishes the government could sort out food arrangements and other issues they are facing.

“Down there in the streets, it is quiet. There is nobody to help me. Most people would not want to be near you. Who would want to give you food?” He asked.

Slinger said they gave their names to the authorities before they arrived.

Meanwhile, Manne Martia says sanitation is a problem as toilets have not been cleaned since they arrived.

“When they bring food, no one has plates, so they just go to the dustbin, fetch a plate and wipe it off,” he said.

Martia said there is little knowledge of Covid-19 among the group.

“I know what the virus is, but there are others who hear about it and don’t know. I understand the disease and the crisis. I can stay here for another six months as long as the virus is correctly handled,” he said.

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