The challenge

UN-Habitat focuses on the biggest deprivations for slum communities: the lack of adequate and safe housing conditions, clean water supply, sanitation and secure land tenure. We concentrate on waste management, gender equality and human rights, climate resilience and participation of the local communities in the slum upgrading process.


UN-Habitat's Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme helped over
slum dwellers with improved tenure security
cities in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific regions have joined UN-Habitat's Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme
slum dwellers worldwide benefit from UN-Habitat's Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme

News and Stories

Mr Karisa Kambi, Member of the community of Mzambarauni, a slum village on the coast of Kenya

“Our parishioners used to meet under trees. Today, the members of the community committee meet in the community centre, which even has a computer room."

Mr Karisa Kambi, Member of the community of Mzambarauni, a slum village on the coast of Kenya

Leaving no one and no place behind

Hover over or click the icons to learn about UN-Habitat's work on social inclusion here.

Access to safe drinking water falls under international human rights law, sanitation is a basic need and matter of dignity! UN-Habitat takes action to provide safe, sufficient and affordable drinking water and sanitation facilities for slum dwellers and vulnerable communities.

Human rights icon

Women in developing countries build the backbone of a community, but are often discriminated against and regarded as one of the most vulnerable groups. UN-Habitat empowers women, promotes gender equality and strengthens human rights as they set the standards for people to live in freedom, equality and dignity.

Gender icon

UN-Habitat focuses on the most vulnerable groups in the slums: women, children, youth, elderly and disabled people in terms of their basic needs. We help to build capacities, create job opportunities, help to provide education and improve the local economy to better people’s livelihoods.

Children icon

UN-Habitat includes disabled slum dwellers in almost all the project approaches: disabled people are part of the decision making process within the communities, they are represented in the community committees, can apply and receive funding and run Community Managed Funds (UN-Habitat-sponsored action groups that take on specific tasks in the settlement, which generate income for the community).

Disability icon