The Nexus of food and housing insecurity in South Africa: the case of Bophelong and Sharpeville townships
Dunga, Steven Henry
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Considered a human right, housing and food security can be viewed as basic to what defines an individual's well-being and is enshrined in the South African Constitution. In any country, affordable housing and food security are central to development to ensure an adequate healthy lifestyle. What makes the link between housing and food security important is that in a household with inadequate resources, housing and food security can be in a competing relationship and may even involve a trade-off between each other. Furthermore, food insecurity and housing insecurity are important components in poverty reduction policies. In this study, a random sample of 600 households was taken based on a quantitative research method. Two low income neighbourhoods were selected in the Emfuleni Municipal area in Southern Gauteng, South Africa. The relationship between food insecurity and housing insecurity was analysed using different statistical techniques. To measure food insecurity the Household Food Insecurity Access Scale (HFIAS) developed by the African Food Security Urban Network (AFSUN) was used, while a housing security measurement scale was developed. The research found that a trade-off exists between housing and food security and, in many cases, food insecurity and housing insecurity exist at the same time. The research established the link between food insecurity, housing insecurity and poverty. Recently, a number of studies focused on food security from an urban perspective, however a limited number of studies focused on housing security, with no focus on the relationship between food and housing insecurity. The findings of this study contribute to the existing body of knowledge on food insecurity, housing insecurity, and the how they can be incorporated in the fight against poverty.