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All roads lead to Lüderitz

by Danny Meyer

The southern port of Lüderitz is preparing for two events that are set to generate significant income for the harbour town’s local economy in April and May.

The first event, which has become a highlight on the town’s annual business calendar, is the Lüderitz Crayfish Festival.

Then hot on its heels, the following week, Lüderitz will host about 400 Rotarians and guests from Angola, South Africa, Germany and the USA, they will be joined by Namibians for Rotary’s annual conference.

It is the first time that the Lüderitz Rotary Club is hosting such a large event and local hotelier, Ulf Grünewald, is heading the organizing team.  

He is assisted by members of the local Rotary club and others in the town.

According to Grünewald, it is a challenge accommodating such a large influx of people for four days, but he is adamant that the town will not only deliver on the expectations of Rotarians, but actually exceed them.

“We as proud Buchters, must put our best foot forward, as this prestigious event will introduce Lüderitz and of course Namibia as a holiday destination,” says Grünewald.

He adds, “Accommodation establishments, eateries, supermarkets, retailers and those engaged in tourism services stand will see a spike in their sales, but they must not overlook the importance of customer service as a way of enticing visitors to stay longer or to return for holiday.”   

Members of Rotary International, the world’s oldest international service organization, known as Rotarians, are just ordinary individuals in business, the professions, in private or public sector jobs who have a common calling, which is to serve the community in which they live and work.

These are people of all ages who engage in projects and programmes that serve to improve the lives of others and particularly the less fortunate in a community.

Established in 1905, there are more than 34 000 Rotary clubs in over 200 countries and territories around the world. 

They gather weekly to fulfil their first guiding principle, which is to develop friendships as an opportunity for community service.

For administrative purposes, Rotary International groups clubs together in districts and the district that will hold its annual conference in Lüderitz from 03 to 06 May comprises of 59 Rotary clubs in Angola, Namibia and the Western Province of South Africa.

“What we find encouraging”, says Grünewald, “Is that more than half of those who are attending Rotary’s conference are actually using the opportunity to make a holiday of it by adding a few days to visit other touristic sports in the country”.

Just shows how a conference creates business opportunities for downstream enterprises.