Strange beds

Pictures by Masixole Feni.Text by Brent Meersman
Two homeless men sleep nights under a bridge on the N2 entering Cape Town. Picture Masixole Feni.
Pictures by Masixole Feni.Text by Brent Meersman

The homeless in Cape Town find refuge wherever they can and sometimes in the most surprising spaces. Where they sleep is often precarious and exposed to various hazards from bad weather and pollution to criminals or people who don’t want them around. Although mostly transient, homeless people will often stay in the same place, wherever it is they have managed to carve out a shelter for themselves. Some homeless people have lived in a suburb or street for longer than many residents who live there in brick and mortar buildings.


A few people have made a home under the bridge at Hospital Bend.


This couple sleep at the Golden Acre shopping centre in central Cape Town.


A couple live in this tent on a pavement in Observatory, Cape Town.


The homeless are routinely evicted or chased away for their sleeping places. Here homeless people in District Six are being evicted.


A number of people are living in graveyards. This bed is one of several in the old Jewish burial site below Groote Schuur hospital. See the feature on their lives.


This Zimbabwean National has been living for months in a dugout trench in District Six. He makes his food outdoors.


Mukwena is one of a dozen people living in holes dug in a field in District Six. He washes in a storm water drain. GroundUp wrote about how they live in March.


Kenneth Oramula lived on the banks of the Liesbeek River. This photo by Shadi Garman. Oramula’s story was told by GroundUp in June.

© 2016 GroundUp. Creative Commons License
This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
TOPICS:  Housing

Next:  City and Blikkiesdorp residents fail to see eye-to-eye

Previous:  Going to work in the morning mist in Mfuleni. Picture by Masixole Feni.