Basket My Basket

Español | Français

A Triumph of Community Resilience and Collective Action

In a remarkable display of determination, a group of kampung residents in Jakarta, Indonesia, under the banner of ‘Housing Rights in Jakarta: Collective Action and Policy Advocacy’*, has successfully fought back against forced evictions and secured their right to housing. Their inspiring story has earned them a Gold World Habitat Award, a prestigious recognition for innovative and effective housing solutions that promote social inclusion and sustainable development.

Kampungs: A Community Under Threat

Kampungs, as informal settlements are known in Indonesia, are home to thousands of low-income families who have made their homes and set up businesses in these communities. For decades, they have faced the constant threat of eviction, often portrayed by politicians as a barrier to the city’s development.

The 2015 Evictions: A Catalyst for Change

In 2015, these fears became a reality for more than 10,000 families who were forcibly removed from their homes by the city government. Refusing to accept this fate, a group of kampung residents, with the support of grassroots organizations, launched the project ‘Housing Rights in Jakarta: Collective Action and Policy Advocacy’*. This initiative aimed to achieve legal and political changes that would protect their right to remain in their neighbourhoods and improve their living conditions.

A Model for Community Empowerment

Through a combination of community collaboration, political advocacy, and network development, the project achieved remarkable success. It prevented the evictions of 256 people in three riverbank kampungs and helped 400 evicted families return to their neighbourhoods to live in new apartments. The project also challenged negative public perceptions of informal settlements and spearheaded city-wide regulatory changes that now safeguard all kampung residents from forced evictions.

Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Executive Director of UN-Habitat commented ” I would like to commend housing rights in Jakarta for its multi organisational partnership and the involvement of the community from the start, as well as the decision to use both a policy and political approach to drive strong change in the narrative towards the neighbourhood and its inhabitants.”

Leilani Farha, Global Director of The Shift said “Housing Rights in Jakarta is a fantastic project providing a space for residents at risk of eviction or who have been evicted to advocate for significant legal and political change.”

David Ireland, CEO of World Habitat explained “The project has managed to build the confidence of at-risk communities and equip them with the tools, knowledge and solidarity network they need to demand the housing rights they are entitled to.”

Gugun Muhammad, Jakarta Urban Poor People’s Network added “The results of the housing policy advocacy movement in Jakarta go beyond matters of how poor people can have decent homes but also result in collaboration between city residents across classes, across generations and various professions.”

*The full title of the consortium is Jaringan Rakyat Miskin Kota Jakarta, Rujak Center for Urban Studies and Urban Poor Consortium.

Latest News

View all

Join the discussion