Perceptions of youth on their housing situation in the inner city of Pretoria

Le Roux, Lené
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When entering and settling into adulthood in a less than ideal developing world, youth with minimal resources continuously need to manoeuvre between opportunities and their living situation. This research project explores the phenomenon of youth residing in the inner city of Pretoria to understand their housing situation through the lens of homelessness and personal development. A qualitative field study, embedded in the research paradigm ethnomethodology, was conducted through interviews and observations with low-income, young males. The research has shown that respondents do not see themselves as ‘homeless’, even though the essence of what a ‘home’ means to them does not resonate with their perception of the inner city. Still, the various housing typologies and channels of socio-economic support that are accessed provide enough reason and resources to retain their position in the inner city. The impact of these negotiations on the identity and overall development of the respondents need further investigation - beyond what the research has suggested.