This project, which was funded by SHLC’s Capacity Development Acceleration Fund, uses a community-based process to improve understanding of sustainable and healthy neighbourhoods through youth participation.

Youth in urban poor settings present an opportunity where they can be trained to effectively advocate for sustainable and healthy neighbourhoods.


Kisenyi slum, located in the capital Kampala, is the largest slum in Uganda with a population of over 42,000 people. Over 70% of this population is aged 10-24 years. Whilst this youthful population presents a challenge given the compounded vulnerabilities in this urban poor setting, it also presents an opportunity for engaging the youth in transforming their community.

Participatory Action Research (PAR) methods will be used to reflect on causes of vulnerability in their immediate neighbourhood and identify solutions that can be implemented by youth in Kisenyi to overcome these vulnerabilities in the short and long term. PAR approaches will include group discussions, transect walks, validation meetings, community dialogues and action planning. Youth focus group discussions will equip them with skills through a structured curriculum to advocate for sustainable neighbourhoods.

The rooftops of Kisenyi, Kampala, Uganda. Credit: Flickr, Slum Dwellers International
The rooftops of Kisenyi, Kampala, Uganda. Credit: Flickr, Slum Dwellers International

The main objectives are:

  1. To equip the youth with skills to understand their neighbourhood in Kisenyi slum, Kampala, Uganda
  2. To explore the youth’s understanding of a sustainable and healthy neighbourhood in the context of the Kisenyi slum in Kampala, Uganda
  3. To describe the various types of neighbourhoods in Kisenyi slum, Kampala, Uganda

Project Outputs

The project was led by Doreen Tuhebwe from Makere University School of Public Health.

This research project ‘How to Improve Understanding of Sustainable and Healthy Neighbourhoods through Youth Participation in Kisenyi Slum, Kampala, Uganda (Sustainable Neighbourhoods with the Youth Study)’ was funded by the Centre for Sustainable, Healthy and Learning Cities and Neighbourhoods (SHLC)’s Capacity Development Acceleration Fund. SHLC is funded via UK Research and Innovation as part of the UK Government’s Global Challenges Research Fund.