Changing images of Nyumba Kumi in Tanzania: Implications for youth engagement in countering violence at community level

Richard F. Sambaiga


The aim of this paper is to examine the resilience of community security (infra) structures by teasing out new images of Nyumba Kumi and the implications for youth involvement in countering violence in Tanzania. Drawing on empirical qualitative case studies from seven regions in Tanzania, this paper seeks to defend the argument that Nyumba Kumi has taken diverse forms in different contexts in order to remain a relevant community (infra) structure for addressing practical issues. The paper concludes that the diverse representations of  Nyumba Kumi reflect both continuity and change in the effort of building institutional resilience. Importantly, emerging forms of Nyumba Kumi accommodate needs and interests of youth among other groups in the community, hence allowing for active engagement in countering violence at community level. The paper calls for strengthening  various forms of community level structures such as Nyumba Kumi as spaces for formal and informal engagement of youth and other actors in countering violence in Tanzania.  

Keywords: Nyumba Kumi, violence, youth, community (infra) structure, Tanzania

Richard F. Sambaiga, Lecturer, University of Dar es Salaam, Email:

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