Experiences of social vulnerability in indigent households related to water service delivery in Kayamandi, Stellenbosch
Harris, Winston J.
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The extent of a community experiencing social vulnerability depends on the community’s ability to access resources that may contribute to coping mechanisms (either within the household or provided externally by a responsible authority) that decrease the impacts and effects of a disaster. Therefore, the purpose of this research was to identify the existence of social and institutional mechanisms that aim to reduce experiences of water inaccessibility and the causes of social vulnerability, and increase coping mechanisms within Kayamandi. Kayamandi is a low income residential community on the north-westerly periphery of the greater Stellenbosch town in the Western Cape. The research attained responses through questionnaires and surveys from residents,community organisations and responsible personnel. These surveys allowed the researcher to produce raw attribute data for each household that assisted in spatially representing vulnerable households and informing the five priority areas of the Hyogo Framework for Action. Contributing to this method of attaining information, secondary geographic data collection was obtained through the Stellenbosch Local Municipality, the National Geospatial Information Directorate and the National Demarcation Board. The findings of this thesis established that household and public water infrastructure contribute to the risk of experiencing social vulnerability that affects economic standings and quality of health within the community. Contributing to this and due to Kayamandi’s politically sensitive and historically fractioned community, social cohesion has also been noted as an area of vulnerability. Although these vulnerabilities are experienced, residents are able to implement technical, social and municipal reliant coping mechanisms. However, although efforts from Stellenbosch Local Municipality do respond to most of the key indicators within the Hyogo Framework for Action, the study found no concrete efforts within the Stellenbosch Local Municipality that illustrate integrated mechanisms to reduce the impacts of disasters and compound effects.