Housing Construction at Chamazi

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Focus Areas: Housing

This project is the first housing scheme in the region and was planned and implemented by the Federation. The Federation purchased a piece of land in Chamazi on which there are 42 houses to date in various stages of construction. The community was involved in conducting enumeration of the settlement which motivated various community initiatives (a community policing team, solid waste management team and borehole water scheme) and increased Federation membership and saving. Sanitation was also addressed on the site through the construction of a wetland scheme which is drawing residents to the area, with a current total of 22 households residing at Chamazi. Water for construction is provided by a borehole on site. Through involvement in planning, designing, and implementation Federation members have gained increased skills and capacity to manage the construction processes. Community contributed in free labour and through financial contributions. Houses were constructed using materials such as interlocking soil cement blocks and sisal fibber roofing tiles which are both low cost and can easily be constructed by beneficiaries.

The Chamazi housing scheme and Muungano housing cooperatives have helped the Federation to engage the Government, Municipalities, Private sector, NGOs, and other stakeholders as well gain support from public officials. The project has helped the Federation gain recognition from both local and central government, with the Chamazi housing scheme receiving recognition as a housing model for the urban poor. The Chamazi project has helped Federation and University students work closely together to investigate critical project components (e.g. designs and sustainability). This has helped increase government awareness of needs of the urban poor in terms of land allocation and plot surveying. Further advocacy is required to scale this up. On a national level the Chamazi project is being considered as an influence for new housing policy.  To date the Federation has influenced the Ministry of Housing and Lands to reduce the size of plots from 400m2 to 144m2. The Federation is also embarking on discussions at a municipal level to consider establishing a resettlement policy. Challenges for the Federation and this project and scaling up include the lack of government support in terms of affordable land and sufficient finance and poor assistance from local financial institutions. 

Location: Chamazi, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Tim Ndezi ccitanzania@gmail.com (+255) 22 270 1390 View Website
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Project information updated: 20 March 2014

Project in depth

Detailed Information

The Chamazi Housing project commenced in 2009 and was a response to an eviction of Kurasini slum residents, because of a port expansion. The Federation enumerated the settlement and mobilized residents to join the Federation and start saving. They then purchased a piece of land in Chamazi in order to address the housing need after the evictions. 
Even though the project was developed along the premise that communities would be able to repay loans in order for more houses to be built, this has been a challenge. In response to this, efforts have been to formalize loan repayment contracts between Muungano Housing cooperative and beneficiaries. This has improved repayment. Additionally, relationships with local business who provided bags of cement has lead to their helping beneficiary’s loan recovery. Challenges for saving including difficulties in arranging meetings with Federation members due to distance and limited livelihood activities. Yet with an increasing population in Chamazi and increasing housing construction, there is potential for this to be connected to development of sanitiation systems. This may allow for income generation, helping the sustainability of the project.  Negotiations are ongoing between the Federation and Muungano Housing Cooperative to secure a loan from Azania Bank through a TAFSU guarantee.

Funding Information



Implementing Partners

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Homeless Peoples' Federation of Tanzania

Centre for Community Initiatives (CCI)