Life is tough for the thousands who sleep on the streets of KwaZulu-Natal’s major port city. While some organisations try to help, police and hospitals often don’t treat them as kindly. As cold weather sweeps across South Africa, chilling the usually balmy coastline, thousands of people in Durban, some in their early teens, sleep in tunnels, under bridges and on pavements.
It is estimated that more than 4 000 people sleep on Durban’s streets. A 2016 study by the Human Science Research Council noted that “seeking employment in the city, family trauma (including family conflict and death of a close family member), individual substance abuse and the lack of an alternative place to go” are all factors that lead to homelessness in the port city.