Mora McLagan – The Mukuru Slum: A Lesson In Inequality

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Oxfam-Mukuru-Cleanup-300x169May 2014. Like most of Oxfam’s supporters, two months ago you could have said the words ‘international development’ or ‘aid’ to me and I would have pictured rural, not urban communities. But while the bulk of Oxfam’s work overseas is still focused on poverty in rural areas, a slow shift is now taking place, some might argue too slowly.
The face of global poverty is changing rapidly.  Poverty is now growing faster in urban rather than rural areas.  UN Habitat estimates that by 2030 about 3 billion people, or about 40 per cent of the world’s population will need proper housing and access to basic infrastructure like water and sanitation systems. To achieve this, we’d need to build 96,150 new housing units per day on serviced and documented land starting right now.
But as an aid agency, what do we do in the meantime? With this question in mind, last month I was in Nairobi, Kenya to visit Mukuru slum and learn about one way Oxfam is responding, through a brilliant new sanitation project in schools with local partner Sanergy.

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