Initially, when Covid-19 made headlines, fears for those living in informal settlements like Kibera were about the potential rapid spread of the virus due to dense populations, the extensive prevalence of underlying health conditions, and the severe lack of healthcare facilities. While these concerns remain significant throughout the pandemic due to its density and packed residences, another threat is rearing its ugly head: hunger.
When Covid-19 reached Kibera, social distancing restrictions meant that much of the work and casual labour people relied on to survive dried up overnight, leaving people with no income. And, without a daily wage, most families living there cannot buy food. Accordingly, whilst poor sanitation and hygiene and extremely close quarter living provides the perfect possible feeding ground for the virus, for many people living in informal settlement communities, the threat of hunger has become greater than the threat of Covid-19.