The Central Methodist Church in Johannesburg has become a sanctuary for Zimbabwean refugees. The Church has opened it doors allowing hundreds of people to settle in its halls, corridors and stairwells. Although the church has provided a safe haven for refugees, it is struggling to cope with the enormity of the situation.
In March 2008 during the first Zimbabwean election period, Ilan Godfrey spent time with the church inhabitants as they waiting in anticipation for the election results to be announced. Most people have no interest in returning to Zimbabwe to vote even though they wanted to see an immediate end to Robert Mugabe's long and traumatic reign. It became apparent that a lot of people feared for their lives. In some cases the refugees did not want to be clearly identified or make their names known for fear of reprisals against their families back in Zimbabwe.
The growing incursion of illegal immigrants contributes to unlawful squatting in South Africa. Most arrive destitute, jobless and homeless. This results in the large majority finding their way to squatter areas. It is estimated that 80% of illegal immigrants inhabit informal housing settlements and squatter camps. This body of work reflects the ongoing struggle of people standing together against one man's ideals.