THE GAUTENG Department of Social Development (GDSD) hosted a meeting at Turffontein Race Course from Thursday, May 3 – May 10 to inform the NPOs about the budget allocations.
The event was conducted by MEC Nandi Mayathula-Khoza and about 2 400 NPOs were in attendance to find out more about the budget allocation for the year 2018 and 2019.
The MEC told the stakeholders that about 11 billion rand had been spent on NPOs in the past four years by the Gauteng provincial government alone. The NPO budget is a bigger part of the GDSD’s overall budget, It comprises about 56 per cent meaning that about 10 billion was used to maintain social welfare and development services and 1 billion was used for new programmes.
On May 3, the department addressed non-profit organisations and faith-based organisations. May 4 will see disability and youth sectors being informed, while on May 8 the budget for children and older persons will be addressed. Lastly, on May 10 the budget for women and small, medium and micro-sized enterprises (SMMEs) will be discussed.
“The budget has already been put in place for this two-year time frame. Therefore, the engagement was to inform the sectors on how the budget is going to be used by the department. Also, we needed the input of the NPOs to say you have allocated the money correctly. We want to see the money being put to this programme or that programme. The most important thing was to listen to them on issues that affect them as NPOs and respond to them,” said Mayathula-Khoza.
It was not all smooth sailing as the MEC might have thought though because a number of NPOs raised their concerns stating that the department was failing them – especially with service delivery.
Andile Mtshali, from the Mduduzi Memorial Organisation, said to COURIER: ”The whole partnership between us, the NPOs and the department is not concrete. I feel as if we are not treated as partners. If one has a partner that means they must consul t in good or bad times and not only in formal stages. The focal point of the partnership is service delivery. The department should make it a point that service delivery is configured and improved. It’s been two months now and our people are ready to receive food parcels and caregivers are not paid. I hope that after this engagement things will be different. Development in the sector is needed. We want to discuss those issues with them and also maintain two-way communication whereby we allow them to engage with the department and not necessarily wait for a formal engagement.”
The MEC said in order for the partnership to thrive, communication between the department and NPOs should be visible. The work of the NPOs in fighting poverty, hunger, abuse, gender-based violence, giving care to children, the elderly and economic empowerment was also recognised.
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