The crowded, impoverished conditions of South Africa’s urban townships have been well-documented over the years. Conditions have improved since racial apartheid came to an end in South Africa in the 1990s, but change has not come rapidly enough to many urban settings.
The township of Mfuleni is a prime example. In an area developed to hold a population of 7,000, more than 25,000 people are crammed into substandard housing units. Most of this increase is due to families who fled recent flooding that washed through surrounding townships.
Today, on the eastern bank of South Africa’s Eerste River, near Cape Town:
Habitat South Africa has a plan to lift up the people living in the Mfuleni township —and not just with a house. Habitat aims to provide new, decent housing, yes, but also improved water and sanitation amenities for households throughout the community. Throughout the project, the goal is to create improved, sustainable living environments.
New housing will be made of brick and mortar and meet new standards created by the country’s Department of Human Settlements. Habitat South Africa also intends to improve each family’s access to water and sanitation.
Global Village is Habitat for Humanity’s international volunteer program. Teams travel to over 40 countries to work alongside communities, build housing solutions, and experience local culture. Our goal is to change the lives of the people we serve, as well as the lives of the volunteers.
To join a team or learn more, visit www.habitat.org/gv.
About Habitat for Humanity International
Driven by the vision that everyone needs a decent place to live, Habitat for Humanity began in 1976 as a grassroots effort on a community farm in southern Georgia. The housing organization has since grown to become a leading global nonprofit working in more than 1,300 communities throughout the U.S. and in more than 70 countries. Families and individuals in need of a hand up partner with Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. Through financial support, volunteering or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone can help families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves. Through shelter, we empower. To learn more, visit habitat.org.
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