© 2019 By Rodrigo Freitas. 

Children of Kibera

 

This photographic series depicts daily moments of the children living in the largest urban slum in Africa - Kibera - situated in Nairobi, Kenya. All the photographs were taken during a period of 24 hours, amid a meeting with Stephen Nzusa, the former programmes manager at Kleanbera. The aim of this encounter was to learn more about different development programmes that are being undertaken by local Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs).

 

According to The Lunchbowl  Network, "there are approximately 1.12 million slum dwellers in the Kibera in an area of 2.5 square kilometres. 75% of the population of Kibera are under the age of 18 and 100,000 children living here are orphaned". The high population density together with inadequate infrastructures and poor sanitation constitutes an environment which is not suitable for any human, especially children. Proof of the human density related pressure can be found in the polluted waters of the Nairobi River that define the southern border of the slum. As reported by Stephen Nzusa, twenty years ago, the Nairobi river was a source of clean drinking water and a place where children would often bathe, while nowadays it is a health hazard and a carrier for large amounts of waste. Although some progress has been made to improve the quality of living of the inhabitants of Kibera, the majority of the population still lives in conditions deemed as atrocious. 

 

This selection of photographs aims to reflect the children's innocence and the difficulties which they experience on a daily basis when living in Kibera.  Hopefully, the work will bring awareness to the undergoing situation there. It intends to present the jovial and jocose nature common to all children while putting an emphasis on the habits that they acquired and enabled them to survive the poor conditions in which they live in.

 

Bibliography:

 

 1. “The Kibera.” Lunchbowl, www.lunchbowl.org/the-kibera.html#. 

 2.“Kibera.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 1 July 2018, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kibera.

3. “Kubuka.” KUBUKA, www.kubuka.org/.