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YUVA aims to ensure people’s access to land and housing as a right. We work with people living in insecure housing conditions, facilitate access to basic services, social welfare and entitlements for social protection. We also build the resilience of communities to handle forced evictions.

Our work is spread across 9 cities⁠ – Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, Panvel, Vasai-Virar, Nagpur, Akola, Guwahati, Delhi and Bhopal


Habitat Stats Infographic - YUVA

Adequate housing

An adequate habitat refers to not just the housing structure, but all amenities and services needed for a dignified life. This includes access to social welfare and entitlements for social protection, basic services, open spaces, social amenities, safe environments, etc.

YUVA’s Habitat Facilitation Centres work towards this end, by facilitating access to:

  • Legal identity documents (voter ID cards, bank accounts, etc) to safeguard people’s identity in cities.
  • Social welfare and entitlements to social protection (such as access to the Public Distribution System, government announced schemes, etc) to enable secure futures.
  • Basic services like water, electricity and waste management to support basic standards of living.
  • Training sessions to help people understand laws, policies and schemes.
  • Leadership development, people-led onground evidence-based research and more.
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Access to land titles

In Nagpur, YUVA’s interventions on people’s right to housing and facilitation of community based organisations led to the growth of a people’s organisation, Shehar Vikas Manch (City Development Forum) in 2004. Since its formation, YUVA and Shehar Vikas Manch have worked together on multiple campaigns and advocacy efforts. Their focused efforts to ensure access to land titles for people in informal settlements has met with success. With the passing of State Government Resolutions towards people’s tenure security, it is estimated that 3,088,481 marginalised persons (derived from Census 2011 figures) are expected to benefit from the implementation.

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Research and advocacy

Through our 38-year engagement on habitat we are mindful of the deep knowledge generated through our work and constantly seek newer ways to disseminate this information to further change. We work with communities, academic and research institutions, governments and experts to create a growing knowledge base, connecting community experiences and policy making by studying the intent and implementation of policies as well as their effects. Our work with people is focused on driving government accountability, with effective advocacy measures.

The knowledge generated at YUVA can take the shape of regular reporting, analytical blogs, and other formats. Head to our Blog, Publications or the Urban Resource Centre to catch up on all the research and advocacy documentation.

Urban inequality

Cities are sites of glaring inequalities. Most at-risk communities in the city include groups of migrant workers, persons from marginalised communities and backgrounds. These settlements include:

  • Homeless individuals and communities
  • Unrecognised settlements (without secure tenure and no access to basic services)
  • Identified settlements (recognised by the government which may/may not have access to basic services)
  • Rehabilitation and resettlement colonies (often known as ‘vertical slums’ as they provide four-walls, but often inadequate habitats)
  • Settlements seeking land rights

YUVA works with each of these communities, facilitating their access to land and housing as a right. We encourage a sensitive people-led response to urban inequalities.

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Caterina Raimondi, a London School of Economics and Political Science student, shares her experience of working with YUVA.


Himanshu Baranwal, School of Planning and Architecture, reflects on his internship experiences at YUVA


Keen to work with us? Head to the Contact tab to check open vacancies/apply for internships