Meetings are picking up around Nairobi for me, and posts are in the works to explain all of them. Yesterday, I met with Ngazi ya Chini and was able to speak to some people who will be affected by the relocation (unfortunately they were a bit camera-shy, but I snapped some photos after the interviews – with permission of course!). Today, I met with a group called Soweto Forum, dedicated to righting the injustices of the government’s slum upgrading program. After that, I met with the Executive Director of Pamoja Trust and gained a bit of perspective on the entire project, including the Relocation Action Plan and how the railroad expansion is actually going to unfold.
Additionally, my director, Iain Guest, will be on his way to Kenya in ten short days, and I have been getting to know this beautiful country better – including a short safari in the Maasai Mara last week and a day trip into the Rift Valley tomorrow. I’m looking forward to sharing all of the above. But in a little bit of time.
Also of note, Pamoja Trust released a progress report on the relocation, which included a timeline for the remainder of the project. The construction phase (that would be demolition) is set to begin in November OF THIS YEAR. That’s pretty soon for my scale, but considering the first eviction notices were handed out in 2004, it must feel like the end of the longest waiting game ever to all the railway dwellers.
I leave you with these interesting and related stories. My flatmate this summer has listened to my railroad jabber all along, and she kindly sent me these two about life along the tracks:
People in Indonesia using the railroad for its healing powers.
This market in Thailand:
And a project I have been obsessed with before Kenya was even a possibility in my mind. Little did I know this area, Kisumu Ndogo, would become my most familiar area in Kibera, and the remnants of the photo project are still around. See more here.
Posted By Kristen Maryn
Posted Jul 22nd, 2011