Slovo Park at a Glance

Slovo Park is situated in a politically and socially sensitive stretch of land south of Soweto. The community has been known by national government as Nancefield, by local council as Olifantsvlei and in the last five years as Slovo Park – named in honour of South Africa’s first minister of housing and former Umkhonto we Sizwe General, Joe Slovo.

The forced changing of identity reflects an on-going struggle faced by the leadership of Slovo Park to gain recognition as a legitimate settlement to access governmental support. This battle has been fought through constant shifts in governmental policy, power and promises for the community of Slovo Park. Their only tactics comprising of service delivery protest, painstaking formal requests for upgrade and currently a lawsuit against the City of Johannesburg.

Currently the community of Slovo Park with its development partners are strategizing this key social and political move.




Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Build week: Day 1

by Yolandi Viljoen

Our first day of build week commenced yesterday. We arrived in Slovo Park at 9:45AM. The JCP students from the University of Pretoria were dropped off at Frank Maparas, not knowing what they have gotten themselves into. Starting off by unpacking the store room, we realise that there is not much we can do, as we have almost no materials. Abby went to Takolias Hyper Hardware, and bought gloves, cement, sheeting, paint brushes and sand paper. We are extremely grateful for our generous discount. On site, the steel windows are being prepared for installation while Tuliza and Clare visit the surrounding homes to collect tools, quite successfully. Tiles on the western and eastern sides were removed to accommodate the seating walls to be built Kiana and I, together with Julia, the lady who will be cooking for us for the week, headed to PicknPay in Kliptown for some basic groceries in order to feed the hard working team. Some of the community members are selflessly helping out, but we are hoping for more volunteers on Wednesday.
On arrival in front of Maparas, Mapara Street

We had a few minor injuries; luckily we came prepared with a mini medi-kit.

Preparations were done but most of the work is postponed as we are waiting for materials, transport and feedback. Tuesday looks promising. Bricks to be delivered at 12:00, sand to be delivered too. Transport was organised to fetch supplies from Rustenburg, and Omar found a jungle gym which we are aiming to fix up and install.
The day ended with a much needed hot plate of Pap and Chicken livers and at 22:00PM we were off to bed.

Photos by Ingmar B├╝chner