Kenya, Nairobi

Skateboarding Society of Kenya, Shangilia

The situation

Kenya is located in Eastern Africa and is one of the poorest countries in the world. Kenya is plagued by a variety of problems such as HIV/Aids, recurring drought, poverty and lack of school education. More and more young people are moving to the bigger cities, hoping for better prospects for their future. As of now, round about 2.7 million people are living in the capital Nairobi.

The most pressing problem in Nairobi is increasing poverty: Around 60 % of the inhabitants of Nairobi live in slums. In the slum Kangemi alone, where skate-aid is working, are living around 100.000 people. There is no running water, electricity only seldom; the makeshift huts are knocked together out of corrugated iron and wood. When darkness falls, locals do well not to venture outside their four walls. Shootings, prostitution, muggings are routine during the night. Many inhabitants live in extremely bad conditions and even with full-time work they can scarcely earn enough to feed their family. HIV is a serious problem in the slums. The number of carriers of the virus living in the slums lies between 50 % and 90 %.

Many children lose their parents early or run away from home, looking for a “less bad life” living on the street. Reasons include violence in the family, parents who are sick or who are drug addicts. Prostitution is a big problem, especially for single-parent families, who often send their children to go begging in the city.

The project