Budget Vote for the Department of Social Development, presented by Limpopo MEC for Health and Social Development, Dr Norman Mabasa at the Limpopo Legislative Chamber, Lebowakgomo
30 Mar 2012
Honourable (Hon) Speaker & Deputy Speaker;
Honourable Premier, Mr Cassel Mathale;
Members of the Executive Council (MECs);
Honorable Members of the Provincial Legislature (MPLs);
Chairperson and Members of the Portfolio Committee;
Executive Mayors and Mayors;
Head of Department Dr Aggrey Morake and Heads of Departments present here;
Leaders of political parties and formations;
Stalwarts and Veterans of our struggle;
Our esteemed Majesties;
Traditional leaders and healers;
Leadership of the trade union movement;
Leaders of faith-based organisations & religious formations;
Representative of Non-Profit Organisations (NPOs) and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) present here;
Members of the media;
Comrades and friends;
Love begins at Home…!
One of the greatest mother of the nation Mother Teressa when accepting the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, Norway on 11 December 1979, she said: “And with this prize that I have received as a Prize of Peace, I am going to try to make the home for many people that have no home. Because I believe that love begins at home, and if we can create a home for the poor, I think that more and more love will spread.”
Honourable Speaker, before I get deeper into the budget speech presentation allow me to thank Honorable Premier Cassel Mathale for the confidence he has shown on me to lead the department.
Premier, I make a commitment that I will do everything in my power jointly with the departmental officials to ensure that we accomplish the African National Congress' (ANC) mandate of delivering quality service to our people.
Honourable Speaker, as the department we are more concerned about the increasing number of destitute and homeless children in our country and in particular our province. This worrying trend has become the defining challenge that young people are and will continue to be deprived of the love that children who grow up in stable homes enjoy.
If these children cannot find that love, peace and comfort in their respective homes we have a responsibility as government to bridge the gap in ensuring that such homeless and destitute children continue to feel at home even outside their home environment.
In this regard, we have built a number of children’s homes in the province with an objective of bridging the gap between homelessness and secure homes. These we have done to make a meaningful contribution and a long-lasting difference in the lives of many vulnerable children and their families.
Honourable Speaker, these homes are not only providing a secure home and or a sanctuary of grace and hope for these children but are also aimed at preventing and stopping child abuse and neglect. We are giving the most vulnerable children hope for a better future and much better tomorrow, thus building strong families.
Honourable Speaker, while providing homes for the homeless, we still have priorities that were set out by the National Department to achieve between 2011 and 2014 being:
- reduction in the abuse of substances
- promotion and establishment of Early Childhood Development
- strengthening of communities through community mobilisation and development
- providing comprehensive social security, including income support, and a safety net for the destitute
- strengthening of the capacity of non-governmental organisations to deliver quality services
- escalation of social policy as a centre for social development research
- promotion of population and development
- welfare services and zero tolerance to hunger.
Drug, alcohol and substance abuse
Honourable Speaker most children who find themselves in these homes are from broken families most of which are ravaged by the challenge of drug, alcohol and substance abuse. The challenge of drug, alcohol and substance abuse remains a serious problem to the province; the culprits are mostly young people and hinder our ideals of building caring, cohesive and sustainable communities.
We must therefore declare war on drug and substance abuse, particularly the use of marijuana, nyaope, tik, including the much taken for granted substances such as glue and benzene. Perhaps we must find a legal way of making sure that components of these drugs are tightly controlled.
In this regard, we will intensify all the initiatives to stop alcohol, drug and substance abuse as it is an important part of achieving social cohesion, especially as it had a significant impact on crime. We will continue to strengthen the “Ke Moja: I am fine without drugs” campaign with the aim of educating our people about the dangers of drug, alcohol and substance abuse.
During the 2011/12 financial year we have reached out to 143 275 youth and 131 426 children through PUPPET shows and our plan this year is to reach 95 650 youth and 77 251 through PUPPET shows.
Similarly, we have hosted the substance and teenage pregnancy summit in which strategies and action plans were drawn by the inter-departmental task team and the resolutions on substance abuse includes but not limited to the following:
- Setting up a cross-departmental operational unit in government that will take responsibility for the implementation of measures to stem the drug problem across its entire value chain.
- Implementation of a continuum of care and a public health approach that provides for prevention, early detection treatment, rehabilitation and after care services.
- Strengthening of after care services, including for young people.
- Public advocacy and messaging which advocates for a substance abuse free society.
- Implementing laws and regulations that will reduce the number of liquor outlets, including shebeens, taverns and liquor stores in specific geographical areas.
- Development of an acceptable definition and protocols for Harm Reduction in the South African context.
- Increasing the provision of rehabilitation and after care and ensuring that all communities have access to these services.
- Imposing health and safety requirements for premises where liquor will be consumed including avoiding overcrowding, providing adequate lighting, food and water, and taking into account access to public transport and toilet facilities.
- Setting an example to the public by ensuring that all public service functions are alcohol free.
- Improving education about the harmful effects of drug and alcohol
Honourable Speaker during the summit both national and provincial delegates were united and resolute that we should further, as a matter of urgency adopt policy to prevent and address substance abuse in the public service. Simply put, delegates are saying to all of us honourable members: Do not provide and or supply alcohol and intoxicants at government functions.
Honourable Speaker, we support Minister of Social Development, Bathabile Dlamini on her department’s decision to reduce accessibility of alcohol through increasing the legal age for the purchasing and public consumption of alcohol from the age of 18 to the age 21.
We also support Minister of Health Dr Aaron Motsoaledi on the decision to put in place a ban on liquor advertising and that a draft bill is ready for gazetting for public comment.
Social Crime Prevention and Support
Honourable Speaker, it is a fact that in most instances the drug and substance abuse are the main contributory factors to social crimes that continue to bedevil our communities. As a result a lot of families in our province are on the brink of collapse and are thus disintegrating.
Consequently, children become vulnerable to a point of becoming homeless thus contributing to an increase on the number of children flooding our streets, sadly referred to as street kids. This is foreign to most of our customs.
We therefore call upon all of you including neighbours to ensure that young children are taken care of, and also to be in a position to identify any symptoms of drug and substance abuse, and report such issues to our social workers.
In this regard, the department of Social Development will continue to offer social welfare services to the people of this province with the aim of ensuring that social crime prevention and support become a success. To this end, we have assessed 2 096 children and placed them in diversion programmes who unfortunately found themselves in conflict with the law during the 2011/12 financial year.
During the 2012/13 financial year, we intend to assess an additional 2 560 children and place them in diversion programmes.
Honourable Speaker, with the aim of ensuring that our children are taken care of and protected from unbearable situations, a total of 6 609 vulnerable children were placed in foster care during 2011/12 financial year and the number is set to increase to 8 516 children for foster care placement during the 2012/13 financial year.
Honourable Speaker, the Department of Social Development has also hosted the Early Childhood Development summit and as a result we resolved on the following:
- professionalisation of the Early Childhood Development (ECD)
- Departments of Social Development and Education to ensure that ECD sites receive the policies (Curriculum and Children’s Act)
- training practitioners on children who live with disability (special needs)
- avoid duplication of training
- in-service training of the current practitioners.
- regulations of stipend
- regulate Radius of ECD centres to improve accessibility
- development of Municipal Laws for establishment of ECD
- free basic services to ECD sites
- subsidy to cover all children
- introduction of family Literacy
- compulsory feeding scheme for ECD centres
- government to take responsibility of building ECD infrastructure
Service to older Persons
Honourable Speaker, while in traditional African societies older persons were generally supported and cared for by their children or extended family, the changing societal dynamic brought about by among other factors, globalisation, urbanisation and the HIV and AIDS pandemic has impacted negatively on the cohesion of the family and its ability to create a nurturing and enabling environment for the protection of older persons.
Under these circumstances there is clearly a need for increased state intervention in support of the elderly based on universal human rights norms and standards. The African Charter provides a broad normative rights framework, there may be merit in developing a specific treaty that articulates both clear and concise human rights standards for older persons and provides a mechanism for implementation and accountability, both of which are currently lacking.
The department has conducted a series of awareness campaigns to address the elder persons’ rights and that they should be loved and respected by the community as they are the treasurers of our traditions and culture.
Despite the awareness campaign which the department has conducted on the rights of older persons within communities, the abuse continues. We are subsidising about seven Old Age Homes and only one home is run by government.
Presently there are 9 821 older persons accessing services in service centres and we intend to reach 11 060 for the 2012/13 financial year.
For the 2012/13 financial year 7 187 older persons will participate in active ageing programmes. The participation of older persons in ageing programme will assist us to achieve one of the Millennium Development Goal of Increasing Life Expectancy by 2014.
Last year Vakhegula Vakhegula Soccer Club were congratulated for winning the International Cup in 2010, this year the grannies will again represent the country in California and Washington in June and July respectively.
The team will also be joined by the team of Vakhalabye VaKhalabye that comprises men from 60 years and older. We appeal to the people of Limpopo to assist them with donations for the success of their trips.
Services to persons with disabilities
Honourable Speaker, Chapter Two of the Constitution of the Republic is very clear on people’s rights. The department is doing its best to ensure that the rights and dignity of all the people is respected. There are 1 191 persons with disabilities in protective workshops and 282 in residential facilities. We intend to have 1 015 people in protective workshops and 294 in residential facilities during the 2012/13 financial year.
Care and support to families
Honourable Speaker, as a matter of fact family units constitute the nucleus of a community and therefore must be cared for and supported particularly during the time of distress. In this regard we have successfully reached 15 732 families during the 2011/12 financial year and we intend to reach 16 000 in the 2012/13 financial year.
Total number of families
With the aim of building a healthy and stress-free society we will provide 3 800 people with social relief of distress in the 2012/2013 financial year; amongst other issues it will include food parcels and pauper’s funerals.
Victim empowerment centres
Honourable Speaker, with the aim of ensuring that victims of different abuses are taken care of, the department has put in place the victim empowerment centres for that purpose.
I am pleased to announce that the department has provided services to 13 686 persons in registered centres of victims of domestic violence during 2011/12.
Based on the funding problem which I have mentioned above, for this financial year we intend to provide services to 14 000 persons. The opening of the Khuseleka Victim Empowerment centre in partnership with United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) through European Union (EU) funding will have a long way in making sure victims of crime and violence receive comprehensive services in the province.
Human resource management
Honourable Speaker, in our concerted effort to address the shortage of social services professionals especially Social Workers, through the national recruitment strategy for social workers, we provide bursaries to prospective employees as a recruitment strategy.
The bursary scheme is part of the recruitment and retention strategy applied to ensure that we have the right number of people to deliver our mandates and also assisting students from needy families to better their lives.
The department has in partnership with national Social Development during the year 2011/12 funded 1 309 students studying towards the Bachelor of Arts (BA) Social Work, of the funded students , 300 have completed their studies and awaiting placement during the 2012/13 financial year.
In the coming financial year the department in partnership with the national department of Social Development will fund 1349 new and continuing social work students.
Honourable Speaker, in order to address the problem of the child-headed families, the department has in the financial year 2011/12 recruited a total of 360 learners from child-headed, orphans and needy children and are undergoing training on social auxiliary work which will be completed in the 2012/13 financial year.
This will indeed assist us in the poverty alleviation programme and further decrease the degree of state dependence by child-headed families. Those who will be assisted will be able to lend a helping hand to their family members and relatives. This programme will contribute positively to job creation which is one of the ANC-led government’s five priorities to be achieved by 2014.
Funding Management and Support of NPOs
Honourable Speaker, government cannot do all this alone, the challenges are so enormous that they require strong partnerships with other equally concerned citizens and willing organisations.
Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) operating in our province will come in handy in this regard. However, the engagement of these organizations must be based on the need and the ability to distribute funding.
Honourable Speaker, funding of the Non-Profit Organisations (NPOs) remains a concern to the department because there are more rapidly increasing organisations that need to be funded without following the correct procedures. In order to address this problem, the department will implement the policy on financial awards which will guide NPOs on processes and procedures of applying for funds. The department will conduct situation analysis to ensure that the right organisations are funded.
We are also in the process of identifying the properly structured NPOs to ensure that funding is directed by the needs on the ground. We need to drive services where they are needed. We are also in the process of auditing all work done by all the Non-Profit Organisations to check existence and capacity of NPOs to provide quality services.
Honourable Speaker, the issue of under funding for the department is a serious cause for concern which needs to be addressed. National Treasury has stated that Limpopo has the third lowest figures in the country for NGOs support. The department has received R260 million in 2011 as compared to a national average of R505 million.
The department in partnership with the Non-Profit Organisations is rendering social development services in the communities and requires funding to enable them to do so.
The Financial Awards Policy which is intended to achieve the strategic objectives of the department to ensure we are able to take care and support the poor and the vulnerable groups, especially children, youth, older persons, people with disabilities, women, victims of violence and abuse, persons affected by substance abuse and those infected and affected by HIV and AIDS is being implemented by the department.
The department is presently funding 1 746 Non-Profit Organisations who have met the funding requirements in programme 2, and an amount of R283 839 000 was transferred. The transfer of funds is done on quarterly basis and monitoring of payments is done to ensure compliance.
The department’s target for 2012/13 financial year is to fund 1 874 with the financial implications of R374 559 000.
I am happy to announce that the department has funded 1 182 Early Childhood Development centres and registered 1 977 all in all. About 110 675 children are accessing the ECD programmes. We need to reinforce these centres because the ECDs form a solid foundation for the success of education in the province.
Honourable Speaker, the department has discovered that there are many challenges facing the proper management of funded NPOs and that majority of them are not complying with Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) and NPO Act. As a result a conscious decision was taken to build capacity on all funded Non-Profit Organisations.
The department intends to introduce a standardised capacity building programme which will focus on broader strategic themes such as Financial Management, Governance, NPOs registration and compliance issues in line with Non-Profit Organisation Act, the successful implementation will require funding which is currently inadequate.
Institutional capacity building and support
Honourable Speaker, the department has made progress in relations to capacity building initiatives with special focus on civil society organisations governance structures. To date 2 007 structures were capacitated on governance matters to enable them to run their organizations effectively and efficiently.
In the 2012/13 we envisage to capacitate 2 000 Non-Profit Organisations according to the capacity building framework through non accredited service providers and 200 NPOs using accredited service providers.
Honourable Speaker, in line with President Jacob Zuma’s invitation to all South Africans to join government in the massive infrastructure development drive, the department will be renovating and upgrading children’s homes.
The department is busy with the upgrading and renovation of Thohoyandou and Mtsetweni Children’s Homes. The projects are currently at 97% construction progress. We will also complete the Iris Children’s Home.
This will go a long way in ensuring that the pride and human dignity of those who stay in these facilities will be restored. It will also assist us in improving the quality of life and care in those facilities.
With regard to the problem of drug and substance abuse infrastructure, in the past the department used to transfer the victims to Mpumalanga and Gauteng because we did not have centres. For the first time this year we will have a substance abuse centre in Limpopo which is currently underway at Seshego. The project is at 80% construction progress, it is anticipated to be completed by the 31st of July 2012.
We also have a challenge in terms of infrastructure for the Early Childhood Development, which resulted in many children not accessing the services especially in the rural areas.
The department’s interaction with other departments
The department is not working in isolation; we are interacting with the department of Health on the following programmes:
- HIV and AIDS with special focus on children
- Older persons
- Teenage pregnancy and Substance Abuse, the department is leading the team of the department of Justice and the South African Police Services
- Early Childhood Development
- Infrastructure, most of our social workers are placed at the department of Health facilities
- The victim empowerment centres
We remain confident that we will be able to achieve the objectives as clearly stated in the department’s ten key strategic focus areas, namely:
- rebuilding of family, community and social relations
- integrated poverty eradication strategy
- comprehensive social security system
- violence against women and children, older persons and other vulnerable groups
- HIV and AIDS
- youth development
- accessibility of social welfare services
- services to people with disabilities
- commitment to cooperative governance
- train, educate, re-deploy and employ a new category of workers in social development
Honorable Speaker, through our dedicated social workers we are restoring the ethics of care and human development in all welfare programmes. This requires an urgent rebuilding of family, community and social relations in order to promote social integration.
We are in the process of designing an integrated poverty eradication strategy that provides direct benefits to those in greatest need, especially women, youth and children in rural areas and informal settlements.
We will develop a comprehensive social security system that builds on existing contributory and non-contributory schemes and prioritise the most vulnerable households. We are responding to brutal effects of all forms of violence against women, children, older persons and other vulnerable groups, as well as design effective strategies to deal with perpetrators.
Our programmes include a range of services to support the community-based care and assistance for the people living with HIV and AIDS. In line with the national strategy to reduce the number of youth in conflict with the law and promote youth development within the framework of the National Crime Prevention strategy we have partnered with the provincial National Youth Development Agency for that purpose.
We are making social welfare services accessible and available to people in rural, peri-urban and informal settlements, and ensure equity in service provision.
Honourable Speaker, we have redesigned services to people with disabilities in ways that promote their human rights and economic development. Our work is based on a commitment to cooperative governance that includes working with different spheres of government and civil society. We are training, educating, re-deploying and employing a new category of workers in social development. This includes the re-orientation of social work services to meet the challenges of province.
We remain committed to provide a comprehensive, integrated, sustainable social development services to the vulnerable individuals, households and communities in partnership with relevant stakeholders as expected, however the shortage of infrastructure and professionals in the sector remain a challenge.
Honourable Speaker, some of the programmes which we have successfully coordinated during the 2011/12 are:
- Early Childhood Development
- Home-Community based care
- Victim empowerment programme
- Substance Abuse
- National School Nutrition Programme
- Masupa-Tsela Youth Pioneer Programme
- Expanded Public Works Programme
A total of 30 262 work opportunities were created and 3 350 beneficiaries have been trained through Expanded Public Work Programme of Social Sector. During 2012/13 financial year, we plan to create an annual total of 30 000 work opportunities and train 5 000 individuals through the Expanded Public Works Programme.
HIV and AIDS
Honourable Speaker, as HIV and AIDS was declared human rights problem by President Nelson Mandela, the department is also doing its best to ensure that even vulnerable children are taken care of. Particular attention is given to orphans and children infected and affected by HIV and AIDS. We have the Social Auxiliary Work Learnership to address the matter.
It is my pleasure to announce to this honorable house that more than 31 800 vulnerable children have received services in drop-in-centres during the 2011/12 financial year. For the coming financial year we will add 13 000 children to last year’s figure to make it 44 000. A total number of 4 280 people were reached through behavioural programmes and the number will be increased to 5 000 in the 2012/13 financial year.
In line with one of the ANC’s top five priorities of job creation, 2 797 jobs were created in the past financial year through Expanded Public Works Programme. For the coming financial year we will fund 244 Non Profit Organisations delivering services to HIV and AIDS infected and affected individuals and families. To strengthen the programme, the department will be conducting situation analysis for implementation of the Isibindi Model in 2013.
Integrated community development support services
Honourable Speaker, Community Development is about building active and sustainable society based on social justice and mutual respect. It is about changing power structures to remove the barriers that deprive poor people and vulnerable individuals from participating in issues that affect their lives and development in a sustainable manner.
In this regard the most vulnerable groups are women, youth and people with disabilities.
The department will embark on programmes and projects that will improve the livelihood of communities.
To address the five priorities of government including eight pillars of anti-poverty strategy the department has and will continue embarking on programmes such as:
- Youth Development
- Sustainable Livelihoods
- Institutional Capacity Building and Support
- Expanded Public Works Programme
Honourable Speaker, youth unemployment is a national problem that requires extended efforts. The youth development programme is geared towards addressing youth unemployment by providing the necessary skills and additional information.
During the previous year the department has capacitated 1 169 on vocational and entrepreneurship skills. The department has trained 206 youth and 25 mentors through Masupa-Tsela Pioneers. For the 2012/13 financial year the department envisages to capacitate 300 youth on accredited vocational skills.
Honourable Speaker, in line with one of African’s greatest philosophers and former Tanzanian President Mwalimo Julius Nyerere’s philosophy that “Do not give a fish to your child, instead teach him/her how to catch it”. Through the Sustainable Livelihood approach we focus on people and their capacities assets and strength rather than their needs, weaknesses and constraints.
We identify people’s strength and use these to enhance their capacities and assets in order to sustain their livelihoods strategies and activities. A livelihood is sustainable when a family can cope with and recover from stresses and shocks.
It is my pleasure to announce to this honourable house that we have profiled 75 626 people and 507 communities during the 2011/12 financial year. The national Ministry of Social Development has introduced the strategy called “Taking Department of Social Development to Communities”. The purpose of “Taking DSD to Communities” is to strengthen partnerships and promote constructive engagement between the department and its agencies and people in disadvantaged communities to tackle poverty, hunger, social exclusion and poor social cohesion.
The Department has implemented the “Taking DSD to Communities” strategy at four communities namely: Ga-Ramaswikana in Capricorn, Mookgopong in Waterberg, Sodoma and Gonono in Mopani and as a result 118 backyard food gardens were established.
For the 2012/13 the department will profile 100 communities and 30 000 households. In the same vein the department will support communities in the quest to reduce level of poverty by funding 30 Community Based Organizations. Honourable Speaker, allow me to acknowledge and appreciate all the institutions and individuals, who have worked tirelessly to ensure that we deliver effective social services to our people.
Let me also thank my predecessor Mme Dikeledi Magadzi for the solid foundation she has laid in ensuring that we deliver quality service to our people. We further call upon the institutions and individuals to double their efforts as we improve the lives of our people.
The delivery of social and welfare services is a collaborative effort, and in line with our government’s motto of “Working together we can do more”.
Indeed let us work together to do more for our communities.
I thank you!
Issued by: Limpopo Health and Social Development
30 Mar 2012
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