The Impact of Corona Virus on Vulnerable Women in Informal Settlements in Nairobi
Susan Kamau* is a single mother in Gataka, an informal settlement located in Nairobi. The Blink survey team identified her during their need’s assessment conducted on 6th June 2020. Before the coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent closure of major industries she used to sell fresh fruits outside one of Nairobi’s universities. However, since the indefinite closure of learning facilities, she has lost her main clientele and has experienced a drastic and sudden loss of income. Her savings have been depleted having spent her reserves on essential commodities such as food for her four children aged between the ages of 7 to 16. On the 2nd of June Susan’s landlord removed her door because she has not paid rent in the last 3 months. The rent cost per month is 1,300KES (USD 13). Susan* informed the Blink survey team that her biggest fear is theft which has seen a drastic rise in recent months due to the pandemic. She is, therefore, reluctant to leave her house unattended. Another concern is the general insecurity this poses to her and her children especially at night when they have no way to protect themselves against bandits and intruders.
Blink has used its platform to connect Nancy to service providers and well-wishers who can support her however it must be acknowledged that vulnerable women like Susan* need further support to ensure their financial and physical safety during these unprecedented times.