Serving up community spirit as Namibia successfully holds Commonwealth Big Lunch

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April 19, 2018
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August 10, 2023

Serving up community spirit as Namibia successfully holds Commonwealth Big Lunch

Commonwealth Big Lunch 2018

On Friday, 20 April, the British High Commission and Physically Active Youth Namibia (P.A.Y.) successfully hosted a Commonwealth Big Lunch for around 150 pupils in Katutura, Windhoek. Commonwealth Big Lunches, created by educational charity the Eden Project in partnership with the UK Government, encourage people to get together to celebrate their Commonwealth connections through food.

The Namibian version of the Big Lunch provided a meal for around 150 pupils. Furthermore like skill sessions for the learners were given by Hermien Elago, TV hostess and fitness inspiration; and Tanya Daringo, one of four Namibian Queen Young Achievers Award winners.

The Commonwealth Big Lunch was held locally, while the UK hosted the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, bringing together up to 53 leaders from across the Commonwealth to London and Windsor from 16-20 April 2018.

Deputy Chairperson of P.A.Y., Kumbi Short in her opening statement, said:

"I am delighted to welcome you all to the Commonwealth Big Lunch being hosted here at the home of P.A.Y. I call it our home, because very much like the Commonwealth itself, our raison d'être at P.A.Y. is founded on the idea of community and the idea that the sum of the parts is bigger than the whole."

After the event, Kate Airey, OBE, British High Commissioner to Namibia, said:

"Sharing the Commonwealth Big Lunch with the children and supporters of PAY was important to us because it embodies an important Commonwealth value: to make a better future for our young people. I am so impressed with the quality education that PAY provides to the children. It makes a huge difference and gives them the resources to realise their potential. This year CHOGM asked all world leaders to commit to 12 years of quality education."
Cutting a Commonwealth cake
Kumbi Short, Deputy Chairperson PAY, and UK High Commissioner Kate Airey, OBE, cutting a “Commonwealth” cake
audience with Hermien Elago
Audience with Hermien Elago


The Commonwealth Big Lunch in Namibia is one of many Commonwealth Big Lunches happening across the 53 Commonwealth nations from 12 March - Commonwealth Day - until Sunday 22 April. Thousands of people from across the Commonwealth are coming together to celebrate, discover and share their Commonwealth links, stories and experiences with one another over a shared meal.

Lunches are being held ahead of and during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting 2018. Unfolding over five days, leaders and foreign ministers from up to 53 countries and over 2,000 delegates will gather in London and Windsor, UK, from 16 - 20 April to discuss and agree how to work together to address shared global challenges.

Regarding the Commonwealth Big Lunches, UK Prime Minister, Theresa May, said:
“The Commonwealth is a diverse and vibrant network and its strength lies in the people-to-people links. The Eden Project brings together millions of people as part of their annual Big Lunch so we are delighted to partner with them on Commonwealth Big Lunches.
"Commonwealth Big Lunches will be an opportunity for people across the Commonwealth to come together and, over a shared meal, discover and celebrate their connections, experiences and stories.”

Patricia Scotland, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth:
“Commonwealth Big Lunches remind us of the range and diversity of our connections and counterparts in countries and communities far away, and bring us together with those who live alongside us locally. They offer wonderful opportunities for people of all ages to bring our great Commonwealth family alive in new ways as we work towards a common future.
"Linking countries and communities set in every continent and ocean, our Commonwealth connection is both global and local. It is also organic and human, enabling us to build together as a worldwide family. Every nation, community or individual person is able to make a contribution to the common good, and each can benefit from our collective achievements.”

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