The houses people are living in and the conditions people are forced to endure in informal settlements here is horrifying. I’ve visited shacks that are held together with just scrap pieces of metal and wood. People have to share a public bathroom with sometimes 9 other households. I’ve also visited homes that are made from shipping containers that have only one room and a kitchen area, others are so small they barely have room for a bed. Even some of the more proper ‘houses’ are nothing that I could imagine living in.
Human dignity is lacking for millions of people here. The largest informal settlement in Cape Town has over a million people living in it. It is estimated that there are around 200 informal settlements in Cape Town alone. After visiting multiple settlements and townships, I have no words to describe how discouraged I feel. It’s empowering to see so many people making changes and positive strides toward development. But even with all these changes it will be a long time before all of these people have a dignified place to live and that’s what disheartens me the most.
It’s difficult to take pictures of many of the places I’ve been to and it also feels uncomfortable to take pictures of other people’s homes without permission. You are welcome to google image search any of the following places that I have visited so far: Khayelitsha, Enkanini, Guguletho, and Langa (where I am currently staying).