Here are some early morning scenes from my environment. I live just North of Johannesburg.This is just around the corner from my house and you can see the Taxi’s picking up commuters. Taxi’s in South Africa are notorious for their driving (and with reason). Many people would be stranded without them. Unfortunately they also make a lot of accidents and I’ve seen quite a few just on this corner alone.
The road sign refers to “Diepsloot.” I live about 20km from Diepsloot and I used to teach children from that community. Diepsloot is made up of government-subsidised housing, brick houses built by landowners as well as shacks. These shacks are built on any piece of land with nothing already on it.The Township was established in 1995 as a transit camp for people that needed to be moved from their homes. Some people never left and Diepsloot is now their home. In 2001 the Gauteng government moved about 5000 families to Diepsloot from the banks of the Jukskei River in Alexandra.The aim of the move was to prevent shacks from being washed away when the river flooded. People who live in Diepsloot use paraffin stoves and coal for cooking, and candles for light. Some shacks have electricity and use a prepaid meter, but this is becoming increasingly expensive and is used sparingly.