Estimates indicate that that there are currently 863million slum dwellers in the world. The population of slum dwellers around the world continues to grow at 10 percent every year, further intensifying the problem. The Millennium Development Goal 7 target 11d’ achieving significant improvement in the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers by 2020” has been achieved, but only because it was set too low at the outset; 100 million was only 10 percent of the global slum population. In addition, hardly any country in the ACP regions has managed to reduce their slum population by half.
Finding solutions to a wide range of needs has been a primary concern for communities and cities around the world. Slum dwellers lack access to basic social amenities and infrastructure that include decent shelter, water, sanitation, schools and health facilities. As such, ambitious, well-devised strategies accompanied by adequate budget allocations are necessary.
Empowering slum dwellers to influence and make decisions and undertake actions that affect their lives is one of the potential solutions being applied to address the slum challenge.
The fund will be implemented through the Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme which is an initiative of the Secretariat of Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States, funded by the European Commission and executed by UN Habitat in partnership with local and national governments. The programme targets to reduce by half the number of slum dwellers come the year 2020, in targeted cities and neighbourhoods.
In order to take stock of progress achieved by governments in cities in the reduction of slum population as well as improvement of the living conditions of slum dwellers, more than 300 participants drawn from 80 countries will participate in a tripartite conference scheduled to take place in Kigali, Rwanda from 4-6 September 2013.The conference also aims to strengthen future collaboration between the European Commission, the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States and UN-HABITAT in order to harmonise contributions to the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) – especially to those relating to urban poverty reduction and slum upgrading.