As people leave rural areas in search of a better livelihood, towns such as Swakopmund are under immense pressure, and their capacity to deliver is a challenge.

The Swakopmund population has grown to over 75,000 people from about 45,000 recorded about 13 years ago. The majority of them live in informal settlements. 

Swakopmund is one of the towns that has been experiencing a high influx of people from all around the country, some of whom could not land a job and ended up fending for themselves.

With a population of over 75,000, more than half of the population—40,000—lives in the DRC informal settlement, where there are several sub-settlements.

The increase in population has seen demand surpass supply, particularly in the provision of basic services.

Located on the outskirts of Swakopmund, the informal settlement is also characterised by a lack of decent housing and limited economic opportunities.

The Swakopmund council started with the formalisation of the 25-year-old informal settlement, with the servicing of land and provision of housing under the Mass Housing umbrella in 2013.

The DRC Proper was designed to accommodate any person who wishes to reside in the settlement.

Applications were received from the residents, especially Mondesa backyard squatters.

Permission was granted to the allocated residents to put up their houses with temporary materials.

One of the residents who migrated from Windhoek due to life hardship there in 2011 was the 34-year-old mother of six, Caroline Kasenda.

Kasenda, a community activist, now owns a soup kitchen and a daycare centre.

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Stefan |Uirab