Sunday, November 2, 2008


Kinondoni Municipal Council is one of the three Municipalities in Dar es Salaam City. The Council was established as an autonomous body in year 2000. It covers 531 of land that includes offshore islands. The Municipality is characterized by both urban and rural physical developments. There is high unemployment in the area. As we walked around we could see groups of young men sitting around at jobless corners doing nothing. The women said, «our children have no job, it is very bad for the boys». When the community is empowered the community can have an impact on the formation of public policy at all levels of government, and make the political, economic, educational and cultural systems accountable to the needs and interests of the community. The community can become empowered only through the organization of the community. Therefore, effective community organizing is the foundation of the process of change.
What is Community Organizing:
Community organizing is the art and science of creating vehicles or organizations for ordinary people to use for participating in the social, political, environmental, and economic decisions that impact on their lives."It is done through conduct frequent community meetings and other opportunities for residents to work together, determine problems and other areas of concern that are important to community residents, encourage residents to participate in addressing their community's issues and to have an active voice. Conduct community outreach or informal surveys door to door to ensure that all residents have an opportunity to give input. Identify leaders in the community who have residents’ support and can organize others. Clearly define specific community issues to focus on and what needs to be done. Create an action plan that is developed and supported by the community, not just a few community leaders. Include short-term, achievable goals to provide success early on. Long range goals will require more time and commitment. Identify allies and enemies of the plan’s strategies and goals. Communicate the plan’s strategies and progress to the community frequently. Provide ongoing training for residents to build their community organizing and leadership skills. Generate additional resources to support community organizing activities and costs. Educate the community and local decision makers about the community’s specific issues and advocate for successful strategies and outcomes and recognize community members for their ongoing participation and celebrate success.
Youth Unemployment is the state in which a youth who want to work but is unable to work. In theory, the youth unemployment rate is the number of unemployed youth divided by the total youth labor force. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) produce official estimates of unemployment using the International Labour Organisation definition. Under this definition people aged 16 and over are unemployed if they are: out of work, want a job, have actively sought work in the last four weeks and are available to start work in the next two weeks; or are out of work, have found a job and are waiting to start it in the next two weeks.
Unemployed youth in the 14 years to 35 years age bracket, these include youth in 'vijiweni' and 'camps' that have become a common sight in all parts of the municipality. Youth in special circumstances these include youth who are engaged in high-risk activities like drugs, commercial sex or criminal activities; youth who are substance addicted; etc.
The problems of unemployment start at the family level because of the poor standards of upbringing of children. Children therefore lacked adequate guidance and counseling about life, resulting in youth with no proper direction in life. A poor family which lacks a positive vision for development also contributes to social problems. The government can also pinpointed as a source of problems because it has failed to provide effective support to poor families.
Specific problems that youth face in their day to day lives are as follows: Poverty; Lack of guidance and counseling; Poor Education (that does not adequately equip them for life in today's world); Economic hardship; Lack of capital (to start income generating activities); Poor upbringing; Lack of love and cooperation; Humiliation; Lack of working tools.
Every day, hundreds if not thousands of people move to the city from the rural areas of the country most of them are youth. This tremendous influx affects the efforts to provide adequate services to the inhabitants of the city. Unless community is organized to cooperate with the central Government and local authorities we cannot really meet the overwhelming burden. There has been a shift in policy in Tanzania; urban development is no longer concentrated in Dar es Salaam alone. Urban centers like Dodoma, Arusha, Mwanza, Mbeya-they are becoming centers of growth in their own right, so this lessens the burden for Dar es Salaam city.
In most countries in West Africa, you will find that most of the development is concentrated in the capital city; but this not the case in Tanzania. In the first place, Dar es Salaam is not the capital city; the capital is Dodoma, which is part of the development of that central part of our country. But we have other commercial centers like Moshe, Arusha, Tanga, Mwanza-they are growing fairly fast. For instance, Arusha now has its own growth as the seat for a number of international institutions such as the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. And then Mwanza has also been recently upgraded from a municipality and designated as another city.
When Community is organized they could themselves contribute towards solving their own problems especially focused on ways of fulfilling basic needs employment, income, food, shelter, education, and other social services. This can be done by formation of groups to solve social problems as well as bringing change in the society. More efforts should therefore be made to sensitize and educate citizens on how to work effectively in groups and associations so as to be able to solve their problems;
Educators in the informal sector should make better use of the mass media to build up programs of education for communities, guidance and counseling for youths in the informal sector should be promoted, exposure visits or study tours should be arranged for unemployed people to learn from practicing small-scale industrialists and agricultural/livestock producers, Protect the rights and market opportunities of small producers - e.g. chicken, milk, eggs, The government needs to control large scale producers of, for example, chicken and eggs, so that they produce according to their approved agreements, Better local markets should be established for small scale producers of oranges, pears.
And, of course, the government have to address the causes underlying rural problems. It must encourage the youth to stay in the rural areas so that there is less migration to Dares Salaam. But that means that there must be viable economic activities to sustain them there--cash crops, good living conditions and availability of services, for which they normally come to town, such as education, health and the provision of safe water. The temptation to move will ease if these services are made available within our rural areas and if the people there have some gainful economic activities--they produce their crops and they sell them. Most of these young men, who peddle goods on the road, are from the South. Traditionally, the South has always been the backwater of the country because it lacked a reliable cash crop, but with the introduction of cashew nuts as a reliable cash crop, most of the towns in the southern part of the country have seen a tremendous rate of growth. So people are now going back to their home areas because they have something to do.

1. http://www.kmcprofile.htm
2. http://www.communityorganizing.htm
3. http://www.gamaliel.organizing.htm
4. Poverty reduction in Dar es Salaam through Youth employment creation, by Gideon Richard June 2004.
5. The women’s perspective, the Case of Manzese , Dar es Salaam, Tanzania by Anna Mtani last updated November 28, 2003.
6. The sustainable Cities Program in Tanzania 1992 – 2003 UN-HABITAT & UNEP October, 2004.

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