Why Kibera?

A Defining Issue of Our Time

Looking out on Kibera

As the world’s population increasingly leaves rural areas for cities, sprawling slums like Kibera grow at unprecedented rates. An estimated one billion people live in slums. In Africa and Asia alone, the number of people living in urban areas is expected to double between 2000 and 2030. Kibera is one of the most densely populated urban settlements in the world. An untold number of people, possibly as many as one million, crowd a 632-acre area outside Nairobi, Kenya. In this small, crowded community, residents struggle to meet basic needs—daily meals, clean water, adequate housing. Gender inequality, limited access to education, ethnic violence and a lack of jobs further impede individual and community progress.

Why Youth?

“The youth are the leaders of today and tomorrow.” -Salim Mohamed, co-founder, Carolina for Kibera.

Kibera is one of the fastest growing areas in Kenya. As many as half its residents are under the age of fifteen. Despite these sobering statistics, CFK believes the dedicated, resilient youth of Kibera will grow into a new generation of wise and empathetic leaders. Kibera’s young people are familiar with hardship. Managing the daily struggle of life in Kibera and rising up as hopeful, confident young adults requires great courage, creativity and determination. These same qualities are essential for affecting and sustaining great change in their community and in our world.