An examination of the urban poverty debate. It brings together contributions from academics, practitioners and urban poverty specialists to present a multi-disciplinary approach to the debate, highlighting the need to link policy, institutional and grassroots efforts. The first part of the book considers the structural contexts - how poverty has arisen, how poverty theory has sought to increase our understanding and how the policies of municipal and national authorities have impacted on the poor. The second part deals with institutional responses to urban poverty and is concerned with the possibilities for constructive action. Here, contributors look at poverty assessments that have been instigated by the World Bank and how these should be used, as well as multi-layered approaches to poverty alleviation which could be supported by donor agencies, and housing creation by governments as a method of poverty alleviation. Real case studies on the work of a South African NGO with the homeless and the work of NGO-promoted micro-finance programmes in the Horn of Africa emphasize the initiative of the poor themselves. The third part explores the grassroots survival strategies of the poor themselves. It looks at the strategies of poor families with particular reference to women's health-seeking behaviour, the plight of street children and old women living alone in Tamale in Ghana and considers livelihood strategies and the significance of rural-urban linkages for the urban poor in Africa.
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