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The objective and subjective conditions of poverty amongst the destitute and homeless population of central Durban.

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This study provides a descriptive analysis of the destitute and homeless central Durban. A quantitative and qualitative examination was undertaken to present a description of both the objective and subjective conditions ofthe destitute and homeless population in central Durban. The quantitative analysis was based on survey data gathered by the eThekwini Homeless Forum over 2002. This survey data provided information for 637 respondents, which this study captured and analysed on data editing software. The qualitative data was collected through ethnographic interviews carried out within night shelters in central Durban. The quantitative analysis revealed the existence of a significant youth contingent within the population, with 15-19 year olds being the most represented. Further, the majority of the respondents report to have been on the streets for less than two years. Two interesting hypotheses for future study arise from this; has there been a massive recent influx of members of central Durban's street population; or does the population experience . significant recycling and rehabilitation of new members? The analysis further revealed that the majority of the destitute and homeless population are from KwaZulu Natal, pointing to a population whose members, for the larger part, have not experienced and massive displacement from their place of origin. The qualitative analysis revealed individuals who have had varying life experiences, and who at present have varying levels of aspiration; but nevertheless, would all benefit and react positively to an engagement from external organisations like the eThekwini Homeless Forum.


Thesis (M.A.)-University of Natal, Durban, 2003.


Poverty--Durban., Poor--Durban., Durban metropolitan area--Economic conditions., Theses--Population studies.