Nairobi is the capital of Kenya and has a population of around 4.4 million. The city is an important commercial and financial hub and is home to major international companies.
Nevertheless, the living conditions of a large proportion of the local population are extremely poor. Many people live in slums, where housing is often dilapidated and basic facilities such as safe water and sanitation are missing. Conditions in the slums are overcrowded, unsanitary and often unsafe. In such an environment, children are particularly vulnerable.
Since 1973, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Nairobi.
Nairobi is the commercial and financial center of Kenya. Economic growth over the recent years has brought relative wealth to some people in the city.
However, a vast number of people still live in poverty. In fact, it is estimated that up to 50% of Nairobi’s inhabitants live in one of the many slums in the city. In these areas, families have an extremely poor standard of living, with no proper housing, running water, sanitation or health facilities. Family income tends to be low and many parents cannot afford to provide for their children.
Most families who live in slums do not have access to safe drinking water, sanitation facilities and sewage systems.
Under these conditions, the risk of contracting life-threatening infectious diseases is high. Children are particularly vulnerable, especially if their immune systems are weakened due to malnutrition. Diarrheal disease is a severe problem as it kills around 19 000 Kenyan children every year. In addition, like in other parts of the country, HIV/AIDS presents a challenge in Nairobi.