We are working in an informal settlement, building a community center. Formal settlements are areas set up by the government. During the apartheid years, people were evicted from their homes and moved there. Formal settlements have more permanent structures. Informal settlements are areas where people take over and build shanties, made mostly of pieces of corrugated tin and plywood.
Our informal settlement is located in the Lavender Hill township, and is called Village Heights. There is a spigot that the community uses for water. Projects Abroad added the infrastructure to our building site and created the only flush toilet in the settlement.
|Lavender Hill/Village Heights (informal settlement)|
|Our housemate Matteo (UK/Italy) , at the work site|
We get lots of help on our project from the children who attend Day Care on the site. We spend a good portion of our time with the children ages 1 to 5. Every day, we are entertained by a chorus of songs while we work. One song is "I love you, you love me, we are a happy family." Another is The Butterfly Song, which the children act out by flapping their arms and floating, then swooping to the ground. The kids love to get high fives, fist bumps, rides above our heads and participation in various ball games.
|The children at the day care center|