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Through Their Eyes and Mouths: Inequality in Access to Food in Urban Poor Settings, Nairobi, Kenya

Elizabeth W. Kimani-Murage, African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC)
Teresia Njoki, UCSF Global
David Osogo, African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC)
Hilda Owii, African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC)
Michelle Mbuthia, African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC)
Paula Griffiths, Loughborough University
Melaneia Warwick, Loughbrough University
Claudia Mitchelle, McGill University
Nyovani Madise, African Institute for Development Policy (AFIDEP)

The right to food is provided for in Kenya 2010 Constitution although it is not actualized for many, particularly those living in poverty. The urban poor are particularly negatively affected, with over 80% of households in these settings being food insecure. We used participatory methodologies to explore the lived experiences with food insecurity among the urban poor living in Nairobi slums. Data revealed inequality in access to food across social, economic, physical and cultural factors. Under these circumstances, many people resorted to coping strategies that on the one hand impacted negatively on health and well-being, and on the other enabled innovative means of ensuring food security. We call for expanded interventions that use innovative participatory methodologies to invite, recognize and represent the voices of the urban poor in efforts to actualize their Right to Food.

See extended abstract.

  Presented in Session 106. Population Dynamics, Environmental Change and Food Security in Africa