Habitat International Coalition
Global network for the right to habitat and social justice
 
Swedish Cooperative Centre Eastern and Southern Africa statement in commemorating World Habitat Day
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Swedish Cooperative Centre (SCC)

The Swedish Cooperative Centre (SCC) in Eastern and Southern Africa, in partnership with housing co-operatives and civil society working on urban development join the world in commemorating the World Habitat Day, under the theme ‘Harmonious Cities’.

One of the important pillars for achieving harmony in cities is the right to adequate housing. The majority of poor women and men in urban areas in East and Southern Africa live in conditions of extreme deprivation and lack, which conditions are not conducive to achieving harmony in cities.

SCC has been working in Kenya and Zimbabwe to support community based initiatives in the form of housing cooperatives and their organisations as well as cooperative-like organisations and NGOs working in the housing sector. The commemoration of this years World Habitat Day in these two countries comes against the backdrop of:-

Post-election violence experienced in Kenya and Zimbabwe in the first half of 2008 that adversely affected the efforts and achievements that some of our partners had made working in slum areas as well as with low income communities to access adequate shelter. The politically motivated disturbances resulted in the displacement of housing cooperative members, destruction of housing cooperative efforts to decent housing, destruction of economic and social networks that were in place to address the impact of HIV and Aids, and the destruction of property and livelihoods.

The xenophobic attacks on immigrants in South Africa are testimony to the need to for all concerned to work towards building harmonious cities as these attacks point to the growing impatience by the urban poor to the limited attention governments in the region have paid to sustainable urban development and to addressing poverty.

The economic meltdown in Zimbabwe has all but rendered housing cooperatives efforts to mobilise savings and construct housing pointless.

SCC is concerned with the ongoing forced evictions that are still taking place in some parts of Africa that are leaving many people homeless and defenceless, especially women and children.

It is in light of this year’s theme, that all stakeholders involved in human settlement will find it necessary to address habitat issues within a harmonious environment where communities are able to address issues affecting their habitat without the fear. SCC supports applauds the efforts that are being carried out by local, regional and international networks, civil society organisations in addressing human settlements development challenges and will continue promote the strengthening of such strategic partnerships as well strengthening partnerships with the government, local authorities and other stakeholders in an attempt to create a suitable environment where the right to adequate housing can be realised.

SCC is a Swedish development NGO, created by the Swedish Cooperative Movement in 1958. We support partner organisations and implement development programmes in more than 25 countries worldwide. We work in three sectors:

· Rural development focussing on sustainable agriculture, food security and local business development (in Southern Africa mainly through support to farmers organisations)

· Adequate housing; promotion of cooperative housing

· Financial services; promotion of member-driven financial services models

The SCC Regional Office for Southern Africa covers operations in five countries: Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Madagascar and Mozambique. SCC-Vi in Eastern Africa works in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda.

SCC’s vision is a world free from poverty and injustice .
One of the important pillars for achieving harmony in cities is the right to adequate housing. The majority of poor women and men in urban areas in East and Southern Africa live in conditions of extreme deprivation and lack, which conditions are not conducive to achieving harmony in cities.

SCC has been working in Kenya and Zimbabwe to support community based initiatives in the form of housing cooperatives and their organisations as well as cooperative-like organisations and NGOs working in the housing sector. The commemoration of this years World Habitat Day in these two countries comes against the backdrop of:-

Post-election violence experienced in Kenya and Zimbabwe in the first half of 2008 that adversely affected the efforts and achievements that some of our partners had made working in slum areas as well as with low income communities to access adequate shelter. The politically motivated disturbances resulted in the displacement of housing cooperative members, destruction of housing cooperative efforts to decent housing, destruction of economic and social networks that were in place to address the impact of HIV and Aids, and the destruction of property and livelihoods.

The xenophobic attacks on immigrants in South Africa are testimony to the need to for all concerned to work towards building harmonious cities as these attacks point to the growing impatience by the urban poor to the limited attention governments in the region have paid to sustainable urban development and to addressing poverty.

The economic meltdown in Zimbabwe has all but rendered housing cooperatives efforts to mobilise savings and construct housing pointless.

SCC is concerned with the ongoing forced evictions that are still taking place in some parts of Africa that are leaving many people homeless and defenceless, especially women and children.

It is in light of this year’s theme, that all stakeholders involved in human settlement will find it necessary to address habitat issues within a harmonious environment where communities are able to address issues affecting their habitat without the fear. SCC supports applauds the efforts that are being carried out by local, regional and international networks, civil society organisations in addressing human settlements development challenges and will continue promote the strengthening of such strategic partnerships as well strengthening partnerships with the government, local authorities and other stakeholders in an attempt to create a suitable environment where the right to adequate housing can be realised.

SCC is a Swedish development NGO, created by the Swedish Cooperative Movement in 1958. We support partner organisations and implement development programmes in more than 25 countries worldwide. We work in three sectors:

· Rural development focussing on sustainable agriculture, food security and local business development (in Southern Africa mainly through support to farmers organisations)

· Adequate housing; promotion of cooperative housing

· Financial services; promotion of member-driven financial services models

The SCC Regional Office for Southern Africa covers operations in five countries: Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Madagascar and Mozambique. SCC-Vi in Eastern Africa works in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda.

SCC’s vision is a world free from poverty and injustice .



 
Tags
• Access to Land & Resources   • Destruction of Housing   • Displacement   • Financing   • Forced Evictions   • Housing Alternatives   • Housing and Land Rights / Right to Adequate Housing   • Housing and Land Rights Violations   • Housing cooperatives   • People’s Housing Processes   • Right to the City   • Security of Tenure   • Technical Areas of Housing   • Women and Habitat   
   
 


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