Local:Global Organizations

Local : Global Networks

The urban population has been rising for decades. Within this, the population of urban slums have been rising exponentially. Without land ownership, these citizens’ rights are limited or even obsolete. With their power in numbers, they have begun to organize.


Slum Dwellers International (SDI) [homepage]

  • formed in 1996 by an alliance of NSDF, Mahila Milan, & SPARC
  • endorsed by World Bank & USAID
  • organized in a framework of federations who achieve their aims through
    • saving and credit groups
    • enumerations and settlement mapping
    • life-size model houses
    • exchanges
    • pilot projects
  • applauded in Robert Neuwirth’s “Bricks, Mortar & Mobilization”

Homeless International [homepage]

  • a UK charity that supports community-led housing and infrastructure related development
  • in partnership with local partner organizations in Asia, Africa and Latin America [partners]
  • initiatives are all led, developed and managed by the local community groups themselves

Cities Alliance [homepage] “cities without slums”

  • global coalition of cities and their development partners committed to scaling up successful approaches to poverty reduction
  • members:
    • Local authorities, represented by United Cities and Local Governments and Metropolis

    • Brazil, Canada, Chile, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Philippines, South Africa, Sweden, United Kingdom and United States of America

    • Asian Development Bank, European Union, UNEP, UN-HABITAT and the World Bank

  • the “Cities Without Slums” action plan was developed by the Cities Alliance in July 1999 and launched by Nelson Mandela at the inaugural meeting of the Cities Alliance in Berlin in December 1999

Habitat International Coalition (HIC) [homepage]

  • the offspring of NGO committee formed to help organize and coordinate the NGO input into the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements in Vancouver in 1976
  • an independent, international, non-profit alliance of some 400 organizations and individuals working in the area of human settlements
  • list of affiliated national and local organizations [link]

Misereor International [homepage]

  • founded in 1958 by the Catholic Church in Germany
  • all-encompassing benefactor for the poor
    • micro-lending
  • works with many local/regional organizations: ACHR, Homeless Peoples Federation, etc

UN-HABITAT [homepage]

  • the United Nations Human Settlements Program
  • programs: Best Practices & Local Leadership, Housing Rights, Cities Alliance, Water & Sanitation, Slum Upgrading Facility
  • list of accredited organizations involved [link]


Asian Coalition for Housing Rights (ACHR) [homepage]

  • started in 1988 by a group of professionals and social activists involved with urban poor development activities in various Asian countries
  • representative for Habitat International Coalition, for Asia
  • main regional network on human settlements and urban issues consulted by many UN agencies such as UNCHS, UNDP and ESCAP
  • active functional units
    • Regional Eviction Watch Program
    • Asian Women and Shelter Network
    • Young Professionals Program
    • Savings-and-Credit Activities
    • Community Organizing and Strengthening
  • Nat’l networks in Nepal, Korea, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Thailand and Japan
  • Collaboration
  • Transparent funding [link] from governments and NGO’s
  • Tel: (66-2) 538-0919
    Fax: (66-2) 539-9950
    Web: www.achr.net
    Email: achr@loxinfo.co.th
    Contact Person: Somsook Boonnyabancha, Maurice Leonhardt
    Address: 73 Soi Sonthiwattana 4 Ladprao Road Soi 110 Bangkok 10310 Thailand
    Community Organization Development Institute ­ (CODI)
    Urban Community Development Office ­ (UCDO)


Society of Urban Poor Federations (SUPF) [SDI link]

  • formed in 1993 with support from the NSDF in India
  • operates in 200 slums and has extended beyond Phnom Penh to 10 other cities and towns
  • 1998, Prime Minister agreed to stop evictions and upgrade 100 settlements
  • 20% of Phnom Penh’s 1 million people live in slums
  • associated w/ SDI [link], ACHR
  • Tel: (855-23) 720890
    Fax: (855-23) 720890
    Email: updf@forum.org.kh
    Contact Person:
    Address: PO BOX 2242 Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Urban Resource Centre Phenom Penh [homepage]

  • they assist communities to develop their own ideas for development
  • bridge the gap between authorities and the urban poor
  • two main objectives:
    • to provide technical and management support to community federations to equip them to plan, design, mapping, implement and maintain settlement improvement program
    • to increase dialog on key urban issues between the various interested parties through formal talks workshops and forums
  • member ACHR


Indian Alliance

  • Comprised of four organizations
    • NSDF
    • Mahila Milan
    • SPARC
    • Nirman
  • Some achievements listed here

Society for the Promotion of Area Resource Centers (SPARC) [homepage]

  • founded by Sheela Patel [wiki] in 1984
  • “social workers, researchers, students, doctors and other professionals who wished to participate in the creation of an institution which would explore new forms of partnerships with the poor in their quest for equity and social justice”
  • concentration on pavement dwellers, women, & shelter
  • affiliated with ACHR & Homeless International
  • Tel: (91-222) 238 65053
    Fax: (91-222) 238 87566
    Web: www.sparcindia.org
    Email: sparc@vsnl.in
    Contact Person: Sheela Patel
    Address: PO BOX 9389 Mumbai 400 026, India

National Slum Dwellers Federation (NSDF)

  • established by Jockin Arputham in 1974
  • 2004 membership of 750,000 households spread around almost 70 towns and cities in India
  • smaller local networks; eg. Railway Slum Dwellers’ Federation in Mumbai

Mahila Milan “Women Together”

  • formed in the 1980s, by NSDF
  • sister organization to encourage more women to enter leadership roles in slum development and poverty alleviation
  • four tier program
    • Milan Nagar, a cooperative designed to seek alternative siting for their housing
    • open bank accounts establishing saving schemes to assist women towards purchasing new homes
    • provideeach family with essential food and clothing
    • deal with crises, such as the provision of emergency loans, or assisting with police-related problems

SPARC Samudaya Nirman Sahayak (SSNS or Nirman)

  • non-profit founded by SPARC, NSDF, and Mahila Milan in 1998
  • support building and construction projects
  • Homeless International’s partner in implementing CLIFF (Community-Led Infrastructure Finance Facility) in India

Integrated Village Development Project (IVDP)

  • founded in 1979 to provide cost-effective and long-term solutions to inadequate housing and water supply in Tamil Nadu
  • grant funding and guarantee arrangements to encourage banks to lend for very poor families to develop their houses
  • Associated w/ Homeless International


Urban Poor Consortium [homepage] [SDI link]

  • Jakarta-based NGO
  • issues of urban poverty, land and housing
  • coordinates local networks, “Urban Poor Linkage” (Uplink), a coalition of community-based organizations, professionals and NGOs around Indonesia founded in 2002
  • Tel: 62 21 864 2915 – / 86902407
    Fax: 62 21 869 02408
    Email: upc@centrin.net.id
    Contact Person:Wardan Hafidz
    Address:Billy Moon Blok H-1/7
    Jakarta 13450


Korea Center for City and Environment Research (KOCER) [homepage]

  • formed by the merging of the Urban Poor Research Institute (UPRI) with the Korean Space and Environment Research Association (KSERA) in 1994
  • four division: Community Action Division, Land Use and Housing, Industry and Labour Division, Environment Pollution Division
  • policy-oriented, training for community leaders
  • member ACHR


Lumanti [homepage]

  • NGO dedicated to the alleviation of urban poverty in Nepal through the improvement of shelter conditions
  • works in 68 slum and squatter communities throughout Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Thimi facilitating three programs :
    • The Urban Community Empowerment Program (supported by Action Aid Nepal)
    • Water and Sanitation Programme (supported by Water Aid Nepal)
    • Support for Displaced Poor Urban Communities (supported by Ockenden International)
  • Tel: (9771) 544 926
    Fax: (9771) 523 822
    Email: shelter@lumanti.wlink.com.np
    Contact Person: Lajana Manandhar
    Address: PO BOX 10546 Kathmandu Nepal

Nepal Settlement Protection Society (Nepal Basobas Basti Samrakshan Samaj)
National Federation of Squatter Communities (Nepal Baso Bas Basti Samrochan Samaj) [SDI link]
National Federation of Women’s Savings Collectives (Nepal Mahila Ekta Samaj)

  • ACHR & Lumanti affiliated
  • establishment of the Kathmandu Urban Poor Support Fund
  • implementation of Nepal’s first community-driven and municipal-supported housing relocation project for river-side squatters at Kirtipur


Orangi Pilot Project (OPP) [homepage] [wiki]

  • Orangi, Pakistan’s largest squatter settlement on the outskirts of Karachi, a city of 12 million
    • 1.2 million people on 8000 acres (density 96,000/sq mi)
  • OPP began in 1980
  • programs in low cost sanitation, housing, health, education and credit for micro enterprise
  • partner w/ Homeless International
  • helped over one million people to improve sanitation since its foundation
  • infant mortality rates have fallen from 130 (1980) to 40 (2006) per 1000 (UN Human Development Report)

Urban Resource Center-Karachi [homepage]

  • founded 1989 at the Department of Architecture and Planning of the Dawood College in Karachi
  • create a space for interaction between poor communities, NGOs, private (formal and informal) sector interest groups, academic institutions and government agencies


Philippine Action for Community-Led Shelter Initiatives, Inc (PACSII)

  • 40% of the Philippines 82 million people live in slums
  • partner w/ Homeless International
  • grew out of a church based organisation called the Vincentian Missionaries Social Development Foundation, Inc. (VMSDFI)

Homeless People’s Federation of the Philippines (HPFP) [homepage ] [SDI link]

  • incorporate over 70,000 people in 25 cities
  • began on the dumpsites of Payatas,Philippines
  • priorities on communities on dumpsites, etc
  • provides communities with information about city development plans and draws local authorities into dialogue
  • land has been secured in several cities and houses have been constructed
  • supported by the Vincentian Missionaries Development Forum (VMSDF)
  • affiliated with SDI, ACHR, Cities Alliance, Misereor International
  • saved over US$1.38 million
  • Tel: (63-2) 455-9480
    Fax: (63-2) 4542834
    Email: vmsdfi@info.com.ph
    Contact Person: Father Norberto Carcellar
    Address: 221 Tandang Sora Avenue, PO BOX 1179, NIA Road 1107, and Quezon City, Philippines

Sri Lanka

Sevanatha [link]

  • founded in 1989 by a group of professionals and community leaders of the urban poor in Colombo
  • implementation of community empowerment projects in urban poor settlements, implementing housing and infrastructure programmes to improve physical and environmental conditions in low-income settlements
  • organizing an Urban Resource Center – a network building and experience sharing programme among NGOs and CBOs
  • engaged in a micro-credit program
  • affiliated with ACHR and Homeless International
  • Tel: (94-33) 222 7962
    Fax: (94-33) 222 7962
    Email: wdbf@sltnet.lk
    Contact Person: Upali Sumithre, Murin Fernando
    Address: No. 30, Kandy Road Galtotamulla, Yakkala, Sri Lanka

Women’s Development Bank Federation (WDBF)

  • emerged out of a pilot project of women’s mutual help groups in 1991
  • loans are made from women’s own savings for small businesses and emergencies and to pay off crippling debts to money lenders
  • 30,000 members


Community Organizations Development Institute (CODI) [homepage] [SDI link]

  • formation and strengthening of myriad forms of community networks
  • assisting various forms of community savings and credit organizations to be set up
  • ACHR affiliated & SDI [link]
  • 2044 / 28 – 33 New Phetburi Road, Khet Huai Khwang,
    Bangkok 10320, THAILAND
    Phone (66-2) 716-6000
    Fax (66-2) 716-6001
    e-mail : codi@codi.or.th
    website : www.codi.or.th



Development Workshop-Angola [homepage]

  • since 1981, non-profit organisation working to improve settlements and livelihoods of the poor in less-developed communities
  • shelter, peri-urban upgrading, water supply and sanitation, microfinance and small enterprise development, peacebuilding, governance and disaster mitigation
  • funded on a project basis by grants from NGOs, national and international development agencies and private foundations
  • HIC affiliated
  • Allan Cain, Director
    C. P. 3360 · Luanda
    Rua Rei Katyavala 113
    P: (+ 244 2) 44 83 66 / 71 / 77
    F: (+244 2) 44 94 94
    W: http://dw.angonet.org/
    E: dwang@angonet.org


Integrated Holistic Approach Urban Development Project (IHA-UDP) [homepage]

  • launched in June 1989 following detailed research, planning, budget preparation, and signed agreements with government and donors
  • begins programs in Community Development, Physical Upgrading, and Primary Healthcare. Programs are slowly handed over to newly organized community organization to run with help and oversight. Programs listed here
  • due to increased need and popularity, IHA-UDP started the Institute for Urban Workers (IUW) to teach both grass root and professional workers at certificate, diploma and soon Masters degree level
  • PO Box 6889 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

P: +251-1-714671
E: iha-udp@ethionet.et
W: http://www.ihaudp.org


Ghana Homeless People’s Federation

  • info on HI website [link]
  • began in Ghana’s capital, Accra, in response to the looming mass eviction of the entire Old Fadama settlement
  • working in 6 out of the 10 regions in Ghana and in 4 of Ghana’s 5 largest urban localities, namely Accra, Kumasi, Ashaiman, and Takoradi
  • affiliated w/ SDI [link] & Homeless International
  • Tel: 09233-21-682896
    Fax: 09233-21-682896
    Email: pdghana@idngh.com
    Contact Person: Rabiu Faruk Braimah
    Address: 10 Perigrino Aryee Street, Abossey Okai,

People’s Dialogue Ghana

  • a community-based NGO working with Ghana Homeless People’s Federation


Muungano wa Wanavijiji

  • formed by residents of informal settlements at the peak of forced evictions and land grabbing in 1996
  • organize the urban poor threatened by eviction, to advocate for their rights and to resist forced evictions or land grabbing by politically and economically advantaged individuals, organizations, institutions and companies
  • advocates for permanent status and alternative resettlement areas for residents, by demonstrating constructive community-led approaches to slum upgrading
  • affiliations: Homeless International [info], SDI [info]
  • Tel: (254) 2 0 565 752
    Fax:(254) 2 0 571 204
    Email: landrite@pamoja.org
    Contact Person: Jane Weru
    Address: PO BOX 10269 Nairobi, Kenya

Pamoja Trust

  • legal rights focus
  • aids communities gathering information about their slum settlements to work with communities in advocating for research and funds to be used to support community-led upgrading processes
  • affiliations: SDI & Homeless International


Centre for Community Organization and Development (CCODE)

  • spawned Malawi Homeless People’s Federation

Malawi Homeless People’s Federation

  • savings groups
  • clean water advocate
  • affiliations: Homeless International [info link]
  • Tel/Fax: +265 1 756781/2
    Mobile: +265 8 8206258
    Email: sikunkhoma@ccodemw.org
    Contact Person: Siku Nkhoma
    Address: 2nd Fl Nasa Blg, Near Area 3 Market, Lilongwe, Malawi

Savings Groups

  • SDI affiliate [link]
  • South African Federation started savings groups in Inhambane in 2005
  • links to communities in Maputo and Quelimane
    • in Quelimane there is a close working relationship with the city authorities
  • groups in Maputo are linked to UN Habitat.


Namibia Housing Action Group (NHAG)

  • voluntary association formed in 1992 to assist low-income housing groups
  • restructured to become the support NGO for the newly created Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia
  • affiliations: Homeless International [link] & SDI [link]

Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia

  • organization of savings groups
  • savings groups have led to land acquisition and tenure
  • affiliations: Homeless International & SDI
  • Tel: (09 264 61) 239398
    Fax: (09 264 61) 239397
    Email: nhag@iway.na
    Contact Person: Anna Muller
    Address: PO BOX 21010 Windhoek Namibia

Sierra Leone

Savings & Enumeration Group

  • the Ghana Federation linked up with Y Care International in Sierra Leone and assisted them to start a savings and enumeration programme in mid 2007
  • mobilization has started in the slums of Kroo Bay and Dworzack

South Africa

Abahlali baseMjondolo [homepage] [wiki]

  • a movement of shack dwellers in South Africa which started with a road blockade in the city of Durban in early 2005
  • now operates across the province of KwaZulu-Natal
  • elected head – S’bu Zikode [wiki]

South African Homeless People’s Federation

  • founder member of SDI
  • helped communities to organize through the establishment of savings and loan schemes, mapping and settlement enumeration exercises, and pilot housing and toilet development
  • built links with national, provincial and municipal governments across South Africa, enabling slum and shack dwellers to access land, claim housing subsidies and tackle other facets of poverty in their communities
  • 2005, restructured as the Federation of the Urban Poor (FEDUP)
  • affiliations: HI, SDI

Federation of the Urban Poor

  • active in all 9 provinces
  • forty-thousand savers in about 700 settlements
  • driven by local, settlement-based leadership, with regional and national structures only playing facilitative and advocacy roles, unlike SA Homeless People’s Federation
  • manages uDondolo Trust: a conduit for resources for its core organizational activities: advocacy, learning, governance and documentation
  • development finance for land, infrastructure and housing is managed jointly with uTshani Fund, FEDUP’s long term urban development partner
  • receives 6000 subsidies per annum in 6 provinces as a result of a pledge by the national Minister of Housing
  • affiliations: HI [link] , SDI [link]
  • Tel 27 82 900 3187
    Fax 27 21 4474741
    Web: www.utshani.org.za
    Email: rose@utshani.org.za
    Contact Persons: Rose Molokoane, Patrick Magebhula

uTshani Fund [homepage]

  • not-for-profit housing finance and development company
  • invests in innovative partnerships between organised slumdwellers and the South African government, as part of a process to change relationships within slum communities, and between them and the state, around issues of human settlement and livelihoods
  • works jointly w/ FEDUP

Community Organisation Resource Centre
(CORK) [homepage]

  • a nucleus for professionals and grassroots activists who think independently yet plan and act collectively
  • provides support to networks of urban and rural poor communities who mobilize themselves around their own resources and capacities
  • enable communities to learn from one another and to create solidarity and unity in order to be able to broker deals with formal institutions especially the State


Swaziland Homeless Peoples Federation

  • Peoples Dialogue Swaziland, support NGO
  • launched in 2001
  • made up of community organizations in rural areas
  • support from the South African Federation and has also received exchange groups from Zimbabwe and Namibia
  • SDI [link=]
  • Tel:09 268 611 5478
    Email: siyatele@netactive.co.za
    Contact Person: P Makora, People’s Dialogue Swaziland


Center for Community Initiatives

  • established in 2004 with a vision of having an improved quality of life (socio-economic) status for all Tanzanian particularly the urban
  • operates in Dar-es-Salaam and Arusha, and has supported the Homeless People’s Federation of Tanzania to emerge
  • by the end of 2005 the Federation comprised 15 savings groups in Dar es Salaam and 5 in Arusha
  • SDI [link]
  • Tel: +255 744 300345
    Email: cci_tz@yahoo.com
    Contact Person: Mwanakombo Mkanga
    P.O.Box 31515
    SIDO Hqtrs-Plot No.892-95
    Mfaume/Fire Road Junction Upanga


Centre for SDI Learning

  • Uganda was the first “Centre for SDI Learning” proposed by the Board in late 2002
  • engagement has resulted in savings groups in three slums (Kisenyi 1,2, &3)
  • savings collectives in Kampala and Jinja were first established in late 2002 when the Indian, South African and Kenyan Federations began to work with the Uganda Government to design and implement citywide slum upgrading programmes
  • SDI [link]
  • Tel: 09 25641342934
    Fax: 0925641342232
    Email: saban@imul.com / saban@info.co.ug
    Contact Person: Sarah Ibanda
    Address:P O Box 10, Entebbe, Uganda


People’s Process on Housing and Poverty in Zambia

  • support NGO for the Zambia Homeless and Poor People’s Federation
    • formed in 2001 from a nationwide network of collective savings groups
    • 22,000 such families across 14 towns and cities nationwide collectively saving
  • affiliations: HI [link ] , SDI [link]
  • Tel: +260 9 7580409
    Email: nelsonvusa@yahoo.com
    Contact Person: Nelson Ncube


Zimbabwe Homeless People’s Federation

  • NGO support from Dialogue on Shelter for the Homeless in Zimbabwe
  • began in 1998 as a network of community savings schemes made up of households living in poor urban communities
  • extensive negotiations with Govt. and enumerations
  • work closely with the South Africans and the Namibians
  • affiliations: HI [link] , SDI [link]
  • Tel: (263 4) 704 027
    Fax: (263 4) 704 123
    Email: beth@dialogshelter.co.zw
    Contact Person: Beth Citekwe-Biti
    Address: PO BOX CH 934 Chisipite, Harare Zimbabwe



Fundacion Vivienda Y Communidad (FVC) (Federations of the Urban Poor)

  • linked to the Trade Union movement
  • interacted with SDI groups in Kenya and South Africa
  • affiliations: SDI [link]
  • Tel: 054 11 4567 3719
    Fax: 054 11 4567 3719
    Email: fvc@fvc.org.ar
    Contact Person:Susana Murphy (Fundacion Vivienda Y Comunidad)
    Address:25 de MAYO 381 (B1702FKG) Gudadela, Province of de Beunos Aires, Argentina


Fundación Pro-Hábitat

  • formed in 1993 with the aim of “responding to the challenge of promoting community participation and management as an essential strategy in the development of human settlements in Bolivia”
  • works with community organizations to coordinate participation and management in settlement development
  • seeking to organize a credit program to aid in this
  • affiliation: HI [link]


Intercao [homepage]

  • support NGO, organized in 2005 as an arm of SDI in Sao Paulo
  • 2004, the first savings schemes were started by a South African exchange team with support from the Sao Paulo Housing Secretariat
  • working together with the Brazil Foundation to develop a working relationship with private sector institutions to secure finance and access to materials and technical assistance for slum upgrading
  • affiliation: SDI [link]
  • Tel: 0955 113159-2621
    Web: www.redeinteracao.org.br
    Contact Person: Anaclaudia Rossbach
    Address: Rua Marques de Itu,58 –Conjunto 908, Vila Buarque – Sao Paulo, SP, Brasil

    CEP: 01223-905

Brazil Foundation [homepage]

  • a public nonprofit organization that provides financial and technical support to local Brazilian nonprofits in their pursuit of a more equitable society
  • acts as a bridge connecting concerned corporations and individuals in the US — largely from the Brazilian Diaspora community — with social leaders who are taking action on the local level
  • mobilizes resources and talents to contribute to the improvement of social conditions
  • support new strategies to address Brazil´s entrenched social problems
  • Av. Calógeras, 15 / 13º andar – cobertura
    Rio de Janeiro, RJ 20030-070
    Tel: (021) 2532-3029
    Fax: (021) 2532-2998
  • 345 Seventh Ave. #1401
    New York, NY 10001
    Tel: (212) 244-3663
    Fax: (212) 244-4334


Leticia Saving Group

  • formed in 1999,hey receive support from Gaia Colombia (Gaia Amazonas Foundation) [homepage]
    • NGO that works in partnership with indigenous communities and organizations for the development of their rights and the conservation of Amazon forests
  • 67 members who are saving to purchase land in this southern Amazon town on the border with Brazil and Peru
  • affiliation: SDI [link]
  • Email:fiona@cable.net.co
    Contact Person:Martin Hildebrand


Women’s Savings Groups

  • The Brazil NGO, Interacao started women’s savings collectives in the capital city of Tegucigalpa in early 2007
  • A support NGO has been established

One response to “Local:Global Organizations

  1. I will like to know about the organizations in Maputo that are dealing with the homeless people of the country.
    I will like to get involved in a of trhe organizations in Mozambique because i like my country asw mush some one thing
    i will like to get form for

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