Improving the lives of Poor People in Namibia

Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia(SDFN)
& Namibia Housing Action Group (NHAG)

Welcome to Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia(SDFN) & Namibia Housing Action Group (NHAG)

The Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia (SDFN), is a community-based network of housing saving schemes, aiming to improve the living conditions of urban and rural poor, while promoting women’s participation. SDFN is affiliate to Shack Dwellers International (SDI). This Federation was founded in October 1998 by 30 grassroots housing groups, which were active since the late eighties.

The Namibia Housing Action Group (NHAG) is a Non-Governmental Service Organization, aiming to support and add value to the activities and processes of the Shack Dwellers Federation Namibia. It was established in 1992 to support the savings groups of the Shack Dwellers Federation as an umbrella organization. NHAG became a separate NGO in 1999, when it was established as a Trust to support the peoples’ processes of the Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia.


SDFN Vision & Mission

The Shack Dwellers’ Federation of Namibia’s main focus is to improve the living conditions of low-income people living in shacks, rented rooms and those without any accommodation, while promoting women’s participation. The Federation facilitates and advocates for change for those excluded from commercial housing and financial processes, using a community-driven approach.

NHAG Vision & Mission

The Namibia Housing Action Group aims to support the Shack Dwellers’ Federation of Namibia in achieving their mission. NHAG facilitates and advocates for change in the livelihood of urban and rural poor by securing affordable land and shelter and improving the living conditions of those excluded from commercial housing and financial processes, using a community-driven approach.

Our Activities

OUR CAUSES

1. Community Saving

89% of the Namibian population does not qualify for conventional home loans and connot access commercial housing. Community saving is the SDFN cornerstone to organize communities. This contributes to the development of households participating in the SDFN saving groups. Each group manages its own savings account. By regular saving the urban poor of Namibia are deriving financial strength from their own resources.

2. Learning Exchanges

Awareness and skills needed to improve the living conditions of the members are shared during local, national and international exchanges. From these exchanges Namibian communities learned how to save daily, collect information, map and plan settlements, and most importantly communities in informal settlements have realised they can do things for themselves.

2. CLIP (Profiling, Enumeration and Mapping)

The Community Land Information Program (CLIP) is a tool to be used by informal settlement residents to better understand their communities, discuss their development priorities and negotiate for better living conditions in settlements. The latest CLIP numbers show that there are 282 informal settlements with 228,423 shacks accommodation about 950,000 people in Namibia. This means more than 40% of Namibian’s overall population and around 80% of its urban population is currently living in shacks.

4. Informal Settlement Upgrading

Upgrading is a term given to measures to improve housing conditions in informal settlements. SDFN and NHAG are Co-Initiators of the National Alliance for informal settlement upgrading because the informal settlement emergency in Namibia is of such scale, that not one stakeholder is able to adress it. This Alliance is a partnership approach to scaling up security of tenure and housing opportunities through co-production between organised communities, local and regional authorities, central government, and universities.

5. The Twahangana Fund

Since 1995 the Twahangana Fund channelled a bit over N$ 180 million to the poor of Namibia. This community-managed revolving fund provides micro loans to the members of SDFN savings groups for land acquisition, servicing of land and house construction. This fund serves as a tool for the very poor to access financial support in a way that is not supported by official banking instruments. Communities, the Government of Namibia and private sector are contributing to the Twahangana Fund.

6. House Construction and Services

The Community Land Information Program (CLIP) is a tool to be used by informal settlement residents to better understand their communities, discuss their development priorities and negotiate for better living conditions in settlements. The latest CLIP numbers show that there are 282 informal settlements with 228,423 shacks accommodation about 950,000 people in Namibia. This means more than 40% of Namibian’s overall population and around 80% of its urban population is currently living in shacks.

7. Financial Partners

The work of SDFN and NHAG is currently supported by Misereor (Germany), GIZ (Germany) and the Shack/Slum Dwellers International. Funds for the Twahangana Fund are contributed by the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development (MURD) as well as the private sector which include the Buy-a-Brick Initiative of Standard Bank Namibia - to which MTC and Huawei distributed significantly, the First National Bank of Namibia, the Harold Pupkewitz Foundation, Ohorongo Cement, Neo Paints and B2Gold.

8. Responses to COVID-19

When the COVID-19 pandemic started in Namibia in March 2020 SDFN and NHAG looked at it as a serious issue that needed to be addressed to make sure SDFN Members and communities of informal settlements are well informed. With support from NHAG, SDFN requested trainings from the Ministry of Health & Social Services in April 2020. Twenty SDFN members were trained to educate communities about COVID-19 symptoms and how they can protect themselves from the virus. SDFN/NHAG have developed pamphlets and fact sheets being distributed in various local languages.

Become A Volunteer

You can become a volunteer for Shack Dwellers and do your part by improving the lives of less privelaged people. Click below to contact us

Be A Volunteer

Sponsorship

We accept sponsorship for our various activities. Click below to contact us.

Be A Sponsor

Do you have any enquiries