Integrating sustainable livelihoods approach in rural housing.
This study was conducted in the rural community of Makhabeleni in Kranskop. This community is under the traditional leadership of Inkosi M Dlomo. One of the Development projects undertaken is the rural housing subsidy scheme, implemented through the Provincial Department of Housing in KwaZulu-Natal. A random sample of 30 respondents was drawn from a population of local residents who are already occupying the constructed houses. The study aims at highlighting the implications of lack of integration of sustainable livelihoods approach in rural housing projects. It argues that the packaging of rural housing projects should incorporate both sustainable livelihoods and community participation approaches. These approaches in housing development should not only focus on the top structure or the shelter, but on other factors, such as infrastructure, electrification, agriculture water and sanitation services. Such an integrated and holistic approach requires proper co-ordination on the part of all stakeholders so as to create sustainable livelihoods and contribute in the elimination of poverty. The findings in this study are that local sustainable livelihoods are the way of life of people, therefore should be considered in the housing delivery process. The conclusion and recommendations drawn from the findings are that integrated rural housing development should be coordinated to promote sustainable livelihoods and local economic development initiatives. Such integration would have a ripple effect in attracting local people, who work in urban areas, to return to their rural communities and invest in housing and also improve the housing conditions in their communities.