By: Julia Heita
We all know February as a month of love, cuddles, candles, flowers, and plenty of chocolates.
As Valentines Day approaches, which is celebrated on 14 February yearly, this is the time couples get together to celebrate love; for the lucky ones, Valentine’s Day is an everyday thing.
Simply You, a lifestyle magazine, held a singles mixers and speed dating event where single people get together to mix and mingle with the hope of finding a potential partner.
The event took place in Windhoek and saw a few singles ready to leave the ‘streets’ and find their soulmates.
Event organizer and Editor-in-Chief, Towa Mungandi, said that for her being in love is always a fantastic thing.
“I’m in a relationship right now, sorry for everyone, but I have always loved putting people together and being a matchmaker.”
Mungandi said she would meet people and be like, “omg, this person will be so good with another person, so yeah, that’s how it came about.”
She took up the challenge of making sure that everyone had company on Valentine’s Day and decided to develop the speed dating idea.
“I was like Valentine’s Day is coming. Why can’t we get people together and make this a memorable day for them.”
Mungandi said her dream behind this is to eventually see someone get married after a date/hookup she organized.
She also plans on making this a yearly event or at least three times a year where people meet other amazing people.
“My aim to get people together that’s what I have been more focused on lately and just broaden the horizons for the event, and having other events like this by us will be very nice,” she said.
Mungandi gave her perception on how Namibian man fears turning up at such events, knowing very well that they are single.
“Generally, I think in Namibia, people are terrified of new things, so we were not expecting the most massive event ever for our first one. The turn-up is fine. Everyone is having a good time, everyone’s dating and moving around, but I think obviously for our next we will have more experience and a better understanding of what to do and what not to do,” she said.
The turn up was not impressive, but Mungandi wishes for a better way of marketing the event next time.
“I think it was good enough with marketing, but I think we would market it better.”
According to her, Namibians tend to run away from such events. Sometimes we don’t want to hook you up for a relationship but rather to get to know each other and become friends.
“I’d advise that shying away from these events to just go for it; you only live once, we have been through so much the past couple of years, and I think it’s important for us to realize that putting yourself out there might be a little scary, but once you get here the environment is amazing the people are amazing, and everyone’s so open and wants to love, so I think just do it, don’t be afraid.”
Tulela Schulz, a participant, said that she is single and has nothing to lose coming to such an event.
“ It’s not necessarily that I’m looking for a man but to meet people. Not everything has to be romantic; you can meet new friends and make new connections. I was not going to miss this event”
Schultz is also a friend to the organizer and was only there to support her friend.
“I think she did the best that she could for this first time because we always learn from the experience, and the next time you would know where you can improve and what you can do better.
Commenting on the turn-up, Schultz said men, in general, have the stigma of being guys and not needing to be here but thinks
they should not look at it like that,
“look at it more like you are going to a party which is the same thing as you go mix and mingle and meet people, which is the same thing. Windhoek is a jungle, and it’s rough out here.”