In/Formal South: Developing a Community of Change

In/Formal South has started the process for a shared learning journey in Hout Bay to discover the genius of the natural world that can inform new and innovative ways to clean the environment that we depend on. Using this process as a catalyst to link together the people of Hout Bay as stewards of their shared environment, enhancing the beauty that people treasure; while creating business and job opportunities, underpinned by social well-being objectives.

In/Formal South has partnered with Cordaid and local organisations such as Thrive Hout Bay, the Cape Town Partnership, the Hout Bay Partnership and the Cape Peninsula University of Technology on this new journey.

Methodology

Part of this shared learning journey has and will include a number of multi-stakeholder engagement activities. The initial phase of the project has involved stakeholder research and collaborative fact-finding to understand the challenges facing the Hout Bay Community. This has included two facilitated co-design multi-stakeholder meetings, and the next phase will be the formation of an inclusive, cohesive and socially representative Community of Change in the area, that is representative of the system. The Community of Change will be responsible for driving identified projects in the area forward.

Identified Challenges

The points 1-8 listed below are some of the challenges that have been identified as part of the scoping phase of this project work.

  1. River Health – reduced health (ecology and water quality) of upper parts of hout bay / disa river – diversion of water at the source of the river to areas outside hout bay, changing natural water flows (storage dams on mountain)
  2. River Safety and security is an issue, and the use of the river is disconnected from local community due to private land ownership in some sections of the river
  3. Imizamo Yethu and Hangberg – inadequate water and sanitation infrastructure
  4. Rapid Urbanisation and local urban management – lack of a clear strategy for how to manage growth of Hout Bay, in both formal and informal areas
  5. Wetland area is Disconnected from the river – so it cannot perform natural ecological functions like managing floods and cleaning water that enters the sea
  6. Harbour and Local Fishing Industry – challenges with harbour management and responsibility, fishing quota system and environmental impacts such as sewage and fish factory waste
  7. Solid Waste – generating large amounts of waste, waste mixing with stormwater and ending up in the sea and on the beach, generating value from waste is limited
  8. Waste Water treatment works discharges raw untreated sewage into the sea

 

The invitation is open for participating in this shared learning journey. if you would like to find out more about this work or if you would like to be involved in the Community of Change for Hout Bay’s water and waste issues, please contact Claire Mollatt via email claire@informalsouth.co.za, sms to 073 056 3985, or phone 021 795 0365.