Portraits of Mathare

The slums of Mathare in Nairobi, Kenya are home to approximately 500,000 people. Most of them live in 10-foot, one-room homes made from whatever materials they can find, usually sheets of corrugated tin. Sewage and trash flow through the streets, snaking their way alongside the walls of the homes. Crime, sickness and death runs rampant. There are no government services like water or electricity, leading many to install their own illegal taps and power lines, which are often faulty and can lead to massive fires. According to residents, the people of Mathare are forgotten or ignored by the government, an eyesore on the map.

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