By Surihe Gaomas WINDHOEK HUNDREDS of orphans and vulnerable children as well as families infected and affected by HIV/Aids in Windhoek were given some bright Christmas cheer when they received Christmas food hampers worth N$65 000 from the Rotary Club Windhoek Auas yesterday. After a busy two hours of packing on Tuesday evening at the Namibia Red Cross Society, the 843 plastic bags of Christmas food hampers were distributed yesterday in several 4×4 bakkies on a door-to-door basis. This is said to be the biggest ever donation raised by the club during the past 14 years through cash collections and food from different affluent members of the Namibian community. When the New Era team visited the launch of the Christmas Hamper Project earlier this week, hundreds of Red Cross and Rotary Club members could be seen in a line passing on the bags of food into the hall. Each parcel contained various basic food items like maize-meal, sugar, macaroni, cooking oil, tinned food, candles, matches, Oros soft drink as well as sweets and biscuits for the vulnerable children. “The donation is just to give them some Christmas cheer over the festive season, because this is a time for sharing and giving to the less fortunate,” said the President of the Rotary Club Windhoek Auas Alexander Zacharia. He added that it was remarkable to see how Namibians are prepared to share with the vulnerable and those who might not be able to have a decent meal over the festive season. From last year’s food hampers distributed to 400 families, the doubling to 843 parcels this time around is notable of the caring attitude that Namibians have towards one another. ” It’s just that time of the year when we show people that we care,” added Zacharia as he went about packing another food parcel at the counter. The distribution of the food hampers conducted by Red Cross and Rotary Club volunteers, including orphans and vulnerable children, will continue. The list of people receiving these items is derived from the Namibia Red Cross Society’s caregivers who keep records of where it should be delivered. Speaking at the launch of the Christmas Hampers Project Secretary General of the Namibia Red Cross Society Razia Kauaria said this was a wonderful way of closing off the year when food is distributed to those families and orphans and vulnerable children. At the same time, she urged the general public, especially those with disposable income, to try and share it with those who are less fortunate. It is also in this appreciating way that Namibians can in some way address poverty and hunger in the country. “It is so gratifying to see the smile on these people when they receive these parcels, because at the end of the day, it means they can have a proper hot meal for Christmas,” added the overjoyed Rotarians Uwe and Heike Boumann. Under its slogan ‘Service above Self’, the Rotary Club Windhoek Auas has been conducting regular charity projects for the past 25 years. The most recent donation was the handover of an ambulance to the Rehoboth community. Plans are afoot to increase the Christmas Hamper Project donations from the current 800 to 1000 food parcels next year.