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Kya Sands is a growing informal settlement on the outskirts of Johannesburg that has faced many setbacks and hardships over the years. It’s been a hotbed for xenophobic violence, devastating fires, and on the receiving end of promises about formalizing housing in the area. Just across the road from the informal settlements is the middle-class suburb of Bloubosrand, where it’s common to find houses selling for over one million rands (approximately USD$80k).

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